MIT researchers have developed BioAutoMATED: an automated machine learning system that can select and build an appropriate model for a given data set

The task of building machine learning models can be challenging, particularly for researchers with no background in machine learning. However, a team of MIT researchers has developed an innovative solution called BioAutoMATED. This automated machine learning system simplifies the model selection process and data preprocessing, significantly reducing the time and effort required. The researchers believe that BioAutoMATED could pave the way for more effective collaborations between biology and machine learning.

BioAutoMATED: a time-saving solution

BioAutoMATED is an automated machine learning system specifically designed to meet the needs of biologists. While current automatic machine learning (AutoML) systems focus primarily on image and text recognition, researchers have realized that the fundamental language of biology revolves around sequences, such as DNA, RNA, proteins and glycans. Leveraging this insight, they extended the capabilities of AutoML tools to handle biological sequences.

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By combining multiple tools under one umbrella, BioAutoMATED allows for a larger research space in model exploration. The system offers three types of supervised machine learning models: binary classification, multiclass classification, and regression models. This flexibility allows researchers to handle various types of data and determine the data needed to effectively train the selected model.

Break down barriers and lower costs

The researchers point out that BioAutoMATED can significantly reduce the financial barriers associated with conducting experiments at the intersection of biology and machine learning. Typically, biology-focused labs must invest in substantial digital infrastructure and hire experts trained in AI-ML before determining the viability of their ideas. However, with BioAutoMATED, researchers can conduct initial experiments and evaluate the potential benefits of engaging a machine learning expert for further model development.

Promote collaboration and accessibility

To promote wider adoption and collaboration, researchers have made BioAutoMATED’s open-source code publicly available. They encourage others to use and improve the code, fostering collaboration within the scientific community. The researchers envision a future where BioAutoMATED becomes a valuable tool accessible to all, merging rigorous biological practices with rapid advances in AI-ML techniques.

The development of BioAutoMATED represents a significant breakthrough in the automation of machine learning for biologists. By simplifying model selection and data preprocessing, this innovative system allows researchers to explore the potential of machine learning without the need for extensive experience. With its user-friendly nature and potential to lower barriers to entry, BioAutoMATED has the potential to revolutionize the field of biology and facilitate fruitful collaborations between biologists and machine learning experts.

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Niharika is a technical consulting intern at Marktechpost. She is a third year student, currently pursuing her B.Tech at Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Kharagpur. She is a very enthusiastic individual with a keen interest in machine learning, data science and artificial intelligence and an avid reader of the latest developments in these fields.

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