New Insights on Big Data and Health at Georgetown University Biomedical Symposium 2018

Innovators, research scientists, clinicians, program managers, and educators converged
at the 7th Annual Big Data in Biomedicine Symposium to improve their knowledge on health data science and to learn about its impact on biomedical research. Vibrent Health was proud to be a key sponsor of the one-day event held at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., on October 26.

Speakers and attendees shared trends about the advancements made in health data analytics and molecular medicine, as well as the development of new state-of-the-art technologies.

Vibrent Health’s CEO, Praduman “PJ” Jain chaired a panel on “Next Generation Data Commons.” The panelists included Dr. Samuel Volchenboum, an expert in pediatric cancers and blood disorders at the University of Chicago Medicine; Ryan Moog, director and solution executive of research at Cerner; and, Joel Saltz, chair and professor of biomedical informatics at Stony Brook University.

Jain focused the panel discussion on an industry goal to gather and share health knowledge globally using machine learning and artificial intelligence to personalize health care for every individual.

Jain also detailed the accomplishments to date of the National Institutes of Health All of Us Research Program. It has more than 133,000 registered volunteers nationwide. He highlighted the program’s technology platform, which Vibrent codeveloped as the Participant Technology Systems Center with the NIH. The platform is intended to accelerate the pace of insights and new knowledge. It represents, “A data commons where the data is defined to be a large biomedical research dataset that’s completely participant-generated,” said Jain.

The vision of the program is to bring the data to citizen scientists, so they can request a certain dataset void of any misuse or reidentification of the data, Jain explained. “Making sure we are able to create mechanisms for high school projects, science projects, for utilization of the data so we can really benefit the breadth of the population, globally.”

Other panels addressed the rise of the digital citizen, obtaining real world evidence, developing a data commons, and educating health data scientists.

In his keynote remarks, Dr. Stephen Evans, executive vice president for medical affairs and chief medical officer at MedStar Health, explained how big organizations are running large, high-volume, high-powered algorithms that are influencing patients’ care in real-time.

“Both Epic and Cerner run large sepsis algorithms that are actually legitimate machine learning, so that every patient that comes in modifies the algorithm based upon the data sets to predict whether or not they actually get sepsis, get infected, and die in a hospital,” said Dr. Evans.

Dr. Subha Madhavan, director of the Innovation Center for Biomedical Informatics (ICBI), talked to attendees about CDGNet, a tool that helps to prioritize targeted therapies based on an individual’s tumor profile.

“With this tool, we can import molecular diagnostics data, say from cancer patients with advanced metastatic cancers, and ask the question: What is the relationship between the anomalies that we find in this patient and potential treatments with high probability of good outcome,” said Madhavan.

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