The healthcare industry continues to be a hotbed of innovation, with activity driven by telemedicine, real-time diagnostics, smart hospitals, and access to digital therapies, as well as the growing importance of technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), the Internet of Things (IoT), augmented reality (AR), robotics and data management practices. In the last three years alone, there have been over 106,000 patents filed and granted in the healthcare industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Artificial Intelligence in Healthcare: AI-assisted medical data mining

However, not all innovations are equal and nor do they follow a constant upward trend. Instead, their evolution takes the form of an S-shaped curve that reflects their typical lifecycle from early emergence to accelerating adoption, before finally stabilising and reaching maturity. 

Identifying where a particular innovation is on this journey, especially those that are in the emerging and accelerating stages, is essential for understanding their current level of adoption and the likely future trajectory and impact they will have. 

200+ innovations will shape the healthcare industry 

According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which plots the S-curve for the healthcare industry using innovation intensity models built on over 443,000 patents, there are 200+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry. 

Within the emerging innovation stage, drug delivery device security, microscopic image analysis models, and cellular imaging techniques are disruptive technologies that are in the early stages of application and should be tracked closely. Smart balloon catheters, automated immunoassay analysers, and AI-assisted MRI are some of the accelerating innovation areas, where adoption has been steadily increasing. Among maturing innovation areas are smart fitness training system and non-invasive physiological monitoring, which are now well established in the industry.  

Innovation S-curve for artificial intelligence in the healthcare industry 

AI-assisted medical data mining is a key innovation area in artificial intelligence 

Data mining is a technology by which the suggested, previously unidentified, and potentially usable information is extracted from a large volume of data in a nontrivial manner. Also known as knowledge discovery in databases, data mining helps in searching large databases for trends and other linkages using statistical approaches and has become very useful for business and research in several fields. 

GlobalData’s analysis also uncovers the companies at the forefront of each innovation area and assesses the potential reach and impact of their patenting activity across different applications and geographies. According to GlobalData, there are 10+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established healthcare companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of AI-assisted medical data mining. 

Key players in AI-assisted medical data mining – a disruptive innovation in the healthcare industry  

‘Application diversity’ measures the number of different applications identified for each relevant patent and broadly splits companies into either ‘niche’ or ‘diversified’ innovators. 

‘Geographic reach’ refers to the number of different countries each relevant patent is registered in and reflects the breadth of geographic application intended, ranging from ‘global’ to ‘local’. 

Patent volumes related to AI-assisted medical data mining

Company Total patents (2010 - 2021) Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies
Illumina 65 Unlock company profile
Alphabet 19 Unlock company profile
Venn Biosciences 16 Unlock company profile
Tempus Labs 12 Unlock company profile
Tata Sons 11 Unlock company profile
4D Pharma 10 Unlock company profile
International Business Machines 10 Unlock company profile
Deep Genomics 10 Unlock company profile
New York Genome Center 9 Unlock company profile
Petuum 8 Unlock company profile
Freenome 8 Unlock company profile
Anixa Biosciences 8 Unlock company profile
FDNA 8 Unlock company profile
Siemens 7 Unlock company profile
Human Longevity 6 Unlock company profile
Inflammatix 6 Unlock company profile
Koninklijke Philips 6 Unlock company profile
BenevolentAI 5 Unlock company profile

Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics

Illumina is the leading patent filer in the AI-assisted medical data mining. Some other leading patent filers include Alphabet and Venn Biosciences. 

In terms of application diversity, Siemens leads the pack, followed by Tata Sons and Human Longevity. With regards to geographic reach, 4D Pharma holds the top position, followed by New York Genome Centre and Venn Biosciences in the second and third spots, respectively. 

The rapidly growing volume of medical text data is making the extraction difficult. Future AI-based data mining techniques should help patients and doctors. AI, which includes machine learning, deep learning, and natural language processing, empowers data mining with multiple benefits, including new insights into decision-making, more accurate and efficient processing of large datasets, and the ability to learn from growing data. 

To further understand how artificial intelligence is disrupting the healthcare industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Artificial Intelligence (AI) in Healthcare


GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData’s Patent Analytics tracks patent filings and grants from official offices around the world. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.