Mount Sinai teams with Sanofi, Sema4 on data-driven asthma study

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A five-year study of almost 1,200 asthma patients will collect real-world data through molecular profiling of biological samples and digital monitoring of the environment.

Mount Sinai Health System is collaborating with biopharmaceutical company Sanofi and predictive health vendor Sema4—which was spun out last year by Mount Sinai—to provide new insights into the biological mechanisms and other factors implicated in asthma by collecting a wide range of data, including clinical, genomics, immunological, environmental, as well as sensor data from mobile devices.

“Understanding how to develop new treatments for asthma starts with a better understanding of the disease,” says Frank Nestle, global head of immunology and inflammation research and chief scientific officer, North America, at Sanofi.

“Our goal is to develop a holistic view of each patient in the study, which is why we’re excited to add digital technology to the traditional types of medical examinations conducted in this study,” Nestle adds. “It’s a new way to approach this enormous problem, connecting real-world clinical and scientific data, that we hope will translate into new ways to treat asthma.”

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According to the announcement, clinical researchers from Mount Sinai, Sanofi and Sema4 will leverage advanced analytics for the data to better understand how asthma functions, what triggers attacks, which patients are most likely to respond to certain therapies, and why the disease affects people differently.

“Asthma is an incredibly complex condition associated with genetics, environmental factors, activity levels, the immune system and more,” says Eric Schadt, chief executive officer of Sema4. “We believe the only way to fully understand asthma is by using sophisticated modeling tools to mine the rich, multi-dimensional data set we aim to generate in this study. This approach could reveal entirely new avenues for alleviating and more effectively treating asthma.”

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