The Discovery of the Causes of Leprosy: A Computational Analysis

Vincent Corruble, Jean-Gabriel Ganascia

The role played by the inductive inference has been studied extensively in the field of Scientific Discovery. The work presented here tackles the problem of induction in medical research. The discovery of the causes of leprosy is analyzed and simulated using computational means. An inductive algorithm is proposed, which is successful in simulating some essential steps in the progress of the understanding of the disease. It also allows us to simulate the false reasoning of previous centuries through the introduction of some medical a priori inherited form archaic medicine. Corroborating previous research, this problem illustrates the importance of the social and cultural environment on the way the inductive inference is performed in medicine.

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