Scripps Research joins collaborative to build EHR database for coronavirus research

La Jolla, Calif.-based Scripps Research Translational Institute is the newest member of the National Institutes of Health's $25 million research initiative that uses data from thousands of COVID-19 patient medical records for disease research. 

Fifteen other institutions are participating in the National COVID Cohort Collaborative, also referred to as N3C, including Baltimore-based Johns Hopkins University, Charleston-based Medical University of South Carolina and Portland-based Oregon Health & Science University. 

The organizations collectively pulled their medical records of confirmed or suspected COVID-19 patients to create a central database, which researchers use to run algorithms and build predictive analytics tools to support COVID-19 research initiatives such as predicting patient responses to antiviral or anti-inflammatory therapies and identifying potential new drugs and treatments. The collaborative uses resources from the NIH's Clinical and Translational Science Awards and its National Center for Data to Health . 

Chunlei Wu, PhD, associate professor of integrative structural and computational biology at Scripps Research, is co-leading project efforts to develop and deploy machine learning and other data analytics tools to analyze clinical and translational questions about COVID-19. 

"During the public health crisis brought on by COVID-19, the CTSA and CD2H networks are uniquely able to translate data into medical knowledge that could help bring this pandemic to an end," Dr. Wu said. "The new N3C initiative exemplifies the shared commitment of this community to make data more open and accessible to scientists everywhere." 


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