Technology that is enabling people to have conversations with famous faces through artificial intelligence is being applied to the world of persistent pain management in a project led by Teesside University.

Professor Denis Martin, Professor Cormac Ryan, Dr Sophie Suri and Dr Andrew Graham, from the University’s School of Health & Life Sciences, are collaborating with pain management expert Pete Moore and StoryFile, an American powerhouse in artificial intelligence, on an exciting project which aims to help people manage persistent pain.

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The project will see cutting-edge technology used to create an AI version of Pete, an internationally renowned expert in pain management, which will be fully interactive and accessible online, able to have conversations, answer questions and assist people with persistent pain.

The process involved Pete undergoing an intense interview process, answering hundreds of questions before being turned into an AI version of himself using StoryFile’s leading technology, which has also been used to preserve the life stories of Star Trek’s William Shatner, Holocaust survivors and a NASA astronaut.

The project could help millions of people living with persistent pain to improve their quality of life and find new methods of self-management.

Denis Martin, Professor of Rehabilitation and Director of the Centre for Rehabilitation at Teesside University, who is leading the project, said: “One of our main priorities within the centre is to help people with persistent pain. The AI agent will support pain management and provide a unique educational resource for our healthcare students.

"Talking to AI Pete will allow them to understand more about the experiences of those living with persistent pain and develop key skills and understanding in how to work with the patient and the condition.”


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