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Artificial intelligence has shown an increasing ability to detect and diagnose eye diseases by analyzing medical images. Now a new system developed by Google and British doctors takes a significant leap forward by predicting which patients with a common condition are most likely to lose their sight.

The new AI, described in a paper published Monday in the journal Nature, is designed to predict imminent risk of total vision loss in patients with age-related macular degeneration, the most common cause of blindness in the developed world. The paper reports that the computer outperformed most eye specialists in determining which patients were most likely to lose sight in both eyes.

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