University of Maryland Medicine Precision Health Study Utilizes Vibrent Health’s Accessible and Scalable Online Platform with a Goal to Enroll 250,000 Diverse Maryland Residents to Learn How Genes and Other Factors Affect Health
Vibrent Health, a health technology startup powering the future of precision health research, today announced that the company’s Digital Health Research Platform will serve as the technology backbone of My Healthy Maryland Precision Medicine Research, a joint initiative of the University of Maryland School of Medicine and the University of Maryland Medical Center and Medical System. The project launched on June 21 and aims to enroll 250,000 diverse Maryland residents over the next decade.
The study will utilize Vibrent Health’s Digital Health Research Platform, which features tools to recruit and engage diverse research cohorts, enable genomic studies and collect data from surveys, biosamples, electronic health records, wearables and other sources to create novel data sets.
“Through partnerships with leading institutions like University of Maryland Medicine, we are dedicated to bringing the latest data-driven digital methods to precision health research, we are committed to constantly innovating digital tools that make it easier and faster for researchers to enroll participants and collect novel study data that can accelerate discoveries and advance precision medicine.”
The strategic relationship with Vibrent Health allows University of Maryland Medicine to leverage Vibrent’s unique digital health research expertise and its end-to-end digital health research platform to create a large distributed longitudinal cohort and augment genomics data with phenotypic information to draw insights about an individual’s health. These insights may help health care providers to identify risks earlier and prevent or mitigate diseases for individuals and communities.
A particular focus of the study will be on underserved populations in Maryland who experience significant health disparities. The large-scale effort to collect broad sources of health data can aid researchers in better understanding how lifestyle and human genomic variation can affect an individual’s health.
The Digital Health Research Platform used by My Healthy Maryland is the same platform developed by Vibrent Health as the Participant Technology Systems Center for the National Institutes of Health’s All of Us Research Program, a precision health research initiative which aims to enroll one million participants. To date, the scalable platform has enabled the enrollment of more than 670,000 health research participants, with 80 percent of participants identifying as individuals who are underrepresented in biomedical research.
“Having accessible digital research tools that can reach participants wherever they are is key to inclusion of populations that often are not part of health research,” said study co-leader Alan Shuldiner, MD, John L. Whitehurst Professor of Medicine and Associate Dean for Personalized & Genomic Medicine at UMSOM. “Having a diverse participant base that represents the diversity of our communities in Maryland is essential to precision health research, so that researchers will better understand how to predict, prevent, detect and treat disease in different people.”
Study participants will get periodic overall reports on the study’s progress. They will also have the opportunity to enroll in ancillary research studies and sub-studies. In the future, researchers also hope to offer study participants the opportunity to learn about their own genetic variations that may warrant follow-up medical evaluation.
“Using Vibrent’s digital health research tools, we can support a mutually beneficial partnership between participants and researchers, which promotes participant engagement,” said study principal investigator Stephen Davis, MBBS, FRCP, FACE, MACP, Theodore E. Woodward Professor and Chair of the Department of Medicine at UMSOM, and Director, Institute for Clinical and Translational Research and Vice President of Clinical Translational Science at the University of Maryland, Baltimore. “Through communication tools embedded in the digital research platform, we can keep in touch with participants and share results and updates with them through the lifecycle of the study.”
Interested participants can get more information and enroll at www.marylandprecisionhealth.org.