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PhD Studentship - Developing reinforcement learning models for precision medicine in multiple sclerosis


   Department of Medical Physics & Biomedical Engineering

   Wednesday, August 31, 2022  Funded PhD Project (UK Students Only)

About the Project

A four-year funded PhD studentship is available at the Centre for Medical Image Computing (CMIC) and UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology in collaboration with an industrial partner in MedTech (Icometrix). Funding will be in line with UCL policy for PhD stipend which can be found here

The successful candidate will join the UCL CDT in Intelligent, Integrated Imaging in Healthcare (i4health) cohort and benefit from the unique multidisciplinary activities and events organised by the centre.

Background

Multiple sclerosis is a chronic disease for which more than 20 disease modifying treatments (DMTs) are available to slow down the disease. However, research has indicated that about 25% of patients start on a treatment that is working sub optimally, and, on average it takes almost 4 years before a treatment switch happens.

The objective of this project is to develop a data-driven predictive model that helps to identify the best treatment for each patient. We know that MRI contains valuable predictive information. For example, it has been shown that MRI measures, like atrophy, can predict long term disability. A model combining MRI and non-imaging data would allow making more evidence-based treatment decisions when choosing the right DMT. In this project, the candidate will develop deep reinforcement learning models that can use the widely available MRI data and combine it with clinical measures to predict the best treatments for individual patients. The outputs of this PhD project will be (a) models that prepare real-world data for downstream modelling, and (b) generate imaging biomarker measures and (c) recommend best treatment for individual patients.

Research aims

Developing multi-model fusion methods integrating neuroimaging biomarkers with clinical data in real-world MS populations using (a) deep neural network architecture that can prepare routine-care quality data for downstream processing, (b) deep reinforcement learning models that can provide predictions of future course of MS and best treatments. The model will be trained on already existing longitudinal MRI and clinical data, as well as patient-reported outcomes and be incorporated in Icometrix’ ePRO tool (icompanion)

Person Specification

Candidates must have:

  • A master’s in computer science, Artificial Intelligence of similar.
  • Interest in Neuroscience and Brain Imaging.
  • Knowledge of Python (Pytorch and MONAI), R, Computer Vision in general.

How to Apply:

Please complete the following steps to apply:


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