‘Personalized medicine is the future – and AI combined with data is the key to bringing it to market’

Dr Carl Marci talks real-world data, early detection of Parkinson’s and how personalized intervention is key to quality of life.

Last month, OM1, a leading real-world data and tech company focused on chronic conditions, announced the launch of its Parkinson’s disease (PD) premium dataset and the enhancement of its Mental Health & Neuroscience Real-World Data Network.

The dataset includes more than 7,000 patients prospectively followed by neurologists in hundreds of clinics across all 50 states. OM1 enriches the data by extracting relevant information from treating clinician notes using its AI and language modeling, and data points include key symptoms, disease severity, treatments, longitudinal outcomes and clinical response. In addition to the dataset, data from an additional 700,000 PD patients are available in the OM1 Real-World Data Cloud for modeling health economics outcomes, patient recruitment for clinical trials, prescriber trends and other research needs.

The dataset combines real-world data sources, such as electronic medical records (EMR), medical and pharmacy claims, mortality data and social determinants of health (SDoH), to provide deeper insights into Parkinson’s disease patient journeys. The data can be leveraged to accelerate medical research and to support approvals and reimbursement, reducing the time to market and improving existing therapies.

Longevity.Technology: This outcomes-enriched dataset comes at a critical time; as nearly one million Americans are living under the shadow of Parkinson’s disease, with some experts arguing the number could be greater due to undiagnosed or misdiagnosed patients. There is currently no known cure and no interventions that meaningfully reduce the progression of this devastating neurological disease. While some medications can help control or lessen symptoms, these medications are most effective in the early stages meaning detection and evaluation of progression are critical. To find out more about something, we sat down with Carl Marci, MD, Chief Psychiatrist and Managing Director of Mental Health and Neuroscience at OM1.

OM1’s use of AI and data from thousands of patients has the potential to significantly impact medical research and the development of therapies – and speed is a factor in this, says Dr Marci, explaining that OM1’s AI and data help to bring better results to market faster.

'Personalized medicine is the future – and AI combined with data is the key to bringing it to market'
Dr Marci presents on OM1 data at a recent conference

“The results are better because they are based on real-world data which is more generalizable than controlled clinical trials,” he says. “The results are faster because they are retrospective (or backward looking) and take months rather than years to generate. Specifically to neurodegenerative diseases, one area where we focus is on early detection and predicting who is at risk. We are also using AI to enrich our data – making it more valuable and more robust to answer more questions.”

OM1’s datasets are based on real-world data, and this ties in with the rise of personalized – and hyper-personalized – medicine. Personalized medicine is often cited as a crucial approach for improving patient outcomes as it leads to enhanced quality of care, contributing to prolonged healthspan of patients and prolonged lifespan.

“Personalized medicine is the future, and AI combined with high quality, deep clinical data is the key to bringing it to market,” Marci explains. “Imagine a world where Mr Jones comes to a clinic and his clinician orders a data test. He is combined with thousands or tens of thousands of patients like him, and recommendations are made on what therapies to consider and predictions about likelihood to respond to those treatments. That will reduce experimentation, side-effects, sub-optimal results and improve outcomes. The result will not only be improved lifespan, but also improved quality of life.”

OM1 gathers data from various sources, and Marci explains that multi-sourced data is ideal for AI and data science models. “More patients and richer data leads to better models with more pathways to better results. Models based on rich datasets also make the model more likely to generalize to other datasets.”

Traditionally, the drug development process has been time-consuming, but artificial intelligence is changing the paradigm, with companies like Insilico demonstrating how AI and machine learning can turn years into months, and months into weeks.

OM1 uses its data to create ‘digital twins’, meaning it can conduct Phase 3 style trials and cohorts much faster than traditional approaches; again, this requires rich clinical data in the condition areas of interest.

Longevity is not only about extending lifespan but also about improving the overall well-being of individuals as they age, and this is something of which OM1 is aware.

“The key to quality of life is early diagnosis and personalized intervention,” says Marci. “That means using AI to identify people at risk for chronic illness earlier and personalized intervention means the right drug at the right time for the right patient.”

Appropriate regulation also plays its part, and Marci points out that regulatory authorities need to get the right balance between protection and progress.

“The regulatory agencies need to continue to keep up with evolutions in technologies and produce guidelines that keep patients safe – but do not stifle innovation.”

[1] https://www.parkinson.org/understanding-parkinsons/statistics

Photos courtesy of Carl Marci, MD/OM1