Fujitsu, Tohoku University Embark on Strategic Alliance to Develop an AI-Model


Fujitsu Limited and Tohoku University today announced the start of a strategic alliance to accelerate the shift towards preventive healthcare and the realization of a ‘Well-being Society’ in which no one will be left behind.

Within their joint project, the two parties will cooperate on the development of new technologies including digital twins(1) in healthcare to visualize simulations of the prevention and treatment of diseases and an AI technology to predict the onset and severity of diseases based on healthcare data such as EMRs(2) and PHRs(3).

Researchers at Tohoku University Hospital will cooperate with business experts and combine its outstanding knowledge of advanced medical care, research results from its Academic Science Unit (ASU)(4) and its Open Bed Lab (OBL)(5) with Fujitsu’s cutting-edge technologies, R&D capabilities and healthcare infrastructure environment and business know-how including Japan’s top share electronic medical record system provided by Fujitsu Japan(6).

Tohoku University and Fujitsu aim to promote initiatives that allow individuals to work towards their own personal health image and to contribute to the realization of a framework where a variety of medical services are provided in an organized way throughout the whole community in order to contribute to the early detection and prevention of frailty spirals(7), a syndrome in which health conditions deteriorate due to a negative cycle caused by a variety of causes such as a lack of physical exercise and malnutrition.

This initiative will be demonstrated at the Fujitsu ActivateNow 2022 special session which will be held online by Fujitsu on Tuesday, October 4 (15:35 to 16:35 JST, held in Japanese).

Tohoku University and Fujitsu will develop an AI model able to detect even small anomalies that can be indicators for diseases from medical data in order to realize efficient diagnosis support in the medical field. The two parties will apply this AI model to health care data including individual patients’ daily diet and exercise data to inform patients about changes in their health conditions and encourage early health examinations at medical institutions.

In developing this AI model, Tohoku University and Fujitsu will leverage medical data accumulated by the Tohoku University Hospital since the start of the predecessor of the electronic medical record system in 1990, advice provided by the hospital’s advanced specialists and business liaison personnel utilizing design thinking to identify needs and create new businesses, as well as Fujitsu’s AI technology.

In addition to the development of a new data base for analyzing large amounts of medical data and health examination information that exist in various data formats as well as personal daily lifelogs, the two parties will further develop a new data analysis method for solving social issues by structuring accumulated data into a data format that can be analyzed.

By making the established data base available to various healthcare-related companies such as pharmaceutical and insurance companies, Tohoku University and Fujitsu further aim to develop a data circulation type ecosystem that contributes to the creation of new medical services and products and can be used to pass on knowledge gained from these processes to hospitals and individuals.

Fujitsu will work with universities and other educational and research institutions as well as medical institutions, pharmaceutical companies, and medical device manufacturers to build a digital health ecosystem in which a wide range of data can be effectively linked and used with the latest digital technology to enable the provision of personalized healthcare throughout the entire life cycle. This project will play a role in its vision for Healthy Living, a Key Focus Area under the Fujitsu Uvance portfolio of global solutions to realize a sustainable future. Fujitsu will utilize the results of this joint research in the development of new solution services and platforms that help to realize a “Well-being Society,” with the aim of providing new value to customers from a wide range of areas, including medical institutions, local governments, insurance business, and pharmaceutical companies.