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NCATS’ Centralized Data Resource Advances COVID-19 Research

COVID-19 data enclave

NCATS’ Centralized Data Resource Advances COVID-19 Research

A centralized resource for COVID-19 data initiated by the National Institutes of Health’s National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences has played a key role in advancing research to combat the ongoing global pandemic.

The National COVID Cohort Collaborative Data Enclave consolidates patient electronic health records and other clinical information related to COVID-19 from various institutions, allowing researchers to determine risk and protective factors, and discover medications to mitigate severe infection and long-term effects of infection, among other things, Nextgov reported.

According to NCATS Acting Director Dr. Joni Rutter, NC3 is the largest collection of EHR records and clinical data available for COVID-19 research.

“N3C is very unusual in that it is largely community- and volunteer-driven with over 2,800 registered users, 1,600 investigators, 89 institutions agreeing to share data, 225 institutions signed to use the data and 245 research projects,” Rutter said in an interview with Nextgov.

As of Sept. 7, Rutter estimated that patient records from about 7.6 million individuals, including more than 2.5 million COVID-19 patients, have been integrated into the N3C Data Enclave.

Approved research projects stemming from N3C data focus on exploring the use of machine learning to identify drugs that can affect COVID-19 patient outcomes and the influence of race on medical resource allocation associated with the novel coronavirus. Other research is aimed at estimating risks around re-infection and investigating new neurocognitive complications.

Moving forward, Rutter said NCATS will work on integrating multiple enclaves of different types of data together. She believes that combining N3C EHR data with a large imaging repository, for instance, could lead to the generation of new insights.

Category: Federal Civilian