Geisinger Health System in Danville, Pa., will collaborate with Regeneron Pharmaceuticals in a major research project to identity genetic determinants of human disease.

Geisinger brings a patient base of three million, its substantial information technology capabilities including an enterprise electronic health records system, and its MyCode bio repository of blood samples from about 45,000 consenting patients.

Tarrytown, NY-based Regeneron markets medicines for eye diseases, colorectal cancer and a rare inflammatory condition, and is developing medicines to treat hypercholesterolemia, oncology, rheumatoid arthritis, asthma and atopic dermatitis. The company brings to the collaboration its Regeneron Genetics Center to perform sequencing and genotyping to generate de-identified genomic data, and its VelociGene technology to validate observed human genetic associations.

During the initial five-year project, Geisinger expects to collect genetic samples form more than 100,000 consenting patients with the goal of improving individualized patient care. “We expect that many of our patients will directly benefit from their participation in this research because of Geisinger’s ability to validate and return clinically actionable results to them, and all of our patients will benefit from the knowledge we gain in how to help set the standard for genomically informed care,” David Ledbetter, chief scientific officer at Geisinger, said in a statement.

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