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Artificial Intelligence for Image Data Analysis in the Life Sciences

Project description

AI at the service of life sciences

Artificial intelligence (AI) has permeated all aspects of our lives, forever changing how we perceive and interact with the world around us. In life sciences, especially, AI has opened new frontiers in the way information is obtained and disseminated. However, concerns remain over equitable data governance as well as access to new AI models, significantly hindering research activities. The EU-funded AI4LIFE project aims to facilitate life scientists’ access to FAIR and open data, focusing especially on AI-powered image analysis methods. To that end, it will develop an open platform hosting FAIR pre-trained AI models which can be easily accessed without requiring advanced computer skills. The new platform will prepare life scientists to handle AI methods responsibly, while also enabling interoperability between different analysis tools.


Machine learning (ML) has enabled and accelerated frontier research in the life sciences, but democratised access to such methods is, unfortunately, not a given. Access to necessary hardware and software, knowledge and training, is limited, while methods are typically insufficiently documented and hard to find. Furthermore, even though modern AI-based methods typically generalize well to unseen data, no standard exists to enable sharing and fine-tuning of pretrained models between different analysis tools. Existing user-facing platforms operate entirely independently from each other, often failing to comply with FAIR data and Open Science standards. The field of AI and ML is developing at a staggering pace, making it impossible for the non-specialist to stay up to date.

To enable the life science communities to benefit from AI/ML-powered image analysis methods, AI4LIFE will build bridges, providing urgently needed services on the common European research infrastructures. We will build an open, accessible, community-driven repository of FAIR pre-trained AI models and develop services to deliver these models to life scientists, including those without substantial computational expertise. Our direct support and ample training activities will prepare life scientists for responsible use of AI methods, while contributor services and open standards will drive community contributions of new models and interoperability between analysis tools. Open calls and public challenges will provide state-of-the-art solutions to yet unsolved image analysis problems in the life sciences.

Our consortium brings together AI/ML researchers, developers of popular open source image analysis tools, providers of European-scale storage and compute services and European life sciences Research Infrastructures -- all united behind the common goal to enable life scientists to fully benefit from the untapped but potentially tremendous power of AI-based analysis methods.


Net EU contribution
€ 238 500,00
PL 123
20521 Turku

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Manner-Suomi Etelä-Suomi Varsinais-Suomi
Activity type
Research Organisations
Total cost
€ 238 500,00

Participants (9)