Soft Computing

, Volume 22, Issue 18, pp 6247–6260 | Cite as

Biclustering with a quantum annealer

  • Lorenzo BottarelliEmail author
  • Manuele Bicego
  • Matteo Denitto
  • Alessandra Di Pierro
  • Alessandro Farinelli
  • Riccardo Mengoni
Methodologies and Application


Several problem in Artificial Intelligence and Pattern Recognition are computationally intractable due to their inherent complexity and the exponential size of the solution space. One example of such problems is biclustering, a specific clustering problem where rows and columns of a data-matrix must be clustered simultaneously. Quantum information processing could provide a viable alternative to combat such a complexity. A notable work in this direction is the recent development of the D-Wave computer, whose processor has been designed to the purpose of solving Quadratic Unconstrained Binary Optimization (QUBO) problems. In this paper, we investigate the use of quantum annealing by providing the first QUBO model for biclustering and a theoretical analysis of its properties (correctness and complexity). We empirically evaluated the accuracy of the model on a synthetic data-set and then performed experiments on a D-Wave machine discussing its practical applicability and embedding properties.


Quantum annealing D-Wave Biclustering 



We acknowledge the support of the Universities Space Research Association (USRA) Quantum Artificial Intelligence Laboratory Research Opportunity program. We would like to thank in particular Davide Venturelli for his very helpful comments on a first draft of this paper.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Computer ScienceUniversity of VeronaVeronaItaly

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