How artificial intelligence is helping to find illegal substances

Published on
September 21, 2021

How do you search for illegal substances that are not yet on the list of unauthorised substances? That is the challenge that researchers from Wageningen Food Safety Research face when investigating food supplements. They succesfully called in the help of artificial intelligence.

A computer that can understand what it reads

The researchers developed a programme (algorithm) that understands texts. This algorithm searched the literature and media for words that mean or refer to the same thing as the word 'stimulant'.

The resulting list was filtered on chemical substances. And after comparing it with the existing list, 20 new illegal substances were discovered. These have now been added to the database.

A good example of how data science can strengthen our food and health research

WUR offers data science as a course

Insight in (big) data can be very helpful in all kinds of research. That's why WUR offers you the opportunity to explore this subject further. For example, there are: