Goal 2: Reduce Human Disease

Biomarkers and phenotypic characteristics of asthma patients

Are there biomarkers or phenotypic characteristics that will allow us to identify the patients with asthma who will experience a more rapid decline in lung function?

Submitted by (@nhlbiforumadministrator)

Is this idea a Compelling Question (CQ) or Critical Challenge (CC)? : Critical Challenge (CC)

Name of idea submitter and other team members who worked on this idea : American Thoracic Society

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Goal 2: Reduce Human Disease

Fibrosis Care Center Network and Patient Registry

Complex diseases such as interstitial lung disease and pulmonary fibrosis requires a collaborative effort to effectively characterize, appropriately diagnose, and efficient evaluate novel therapies. Similarly, basic, translational and clinical research in this field requires the integration of clinical phenotypes with biologic specimens. We propose the expanded development of the Care Center Network and Patient Registry ...more »

Submitted by (@gcosgrove)

Is this idea a Compelling Question (CQ) or Critical Challenge (CC)? : Critical Challenge (CC)

Details on the impact of addressing this CQ or CC :

The envisioned impact of an integrated Care Center Network and Patient Registry is to create a resource that:

 

• Informs the understanding of interstitial lung disease (ILD), its epidemiology and natural history;

• Assists to understand treatment patterns associated with optimal outcomes that will inform an emerging standard of care and development of treatment guidelines;

• Facilitates patient and clinician engagement in support of future prospective studies;

• Furthers study of biomarkers and predictors of disease and severity;

• Documents patient experience of living with ILD as described through patient reported outcomes (PRO) including quality of life, functioning, and symptoms;

• Generates new hypotheses and new endpoints in support of future studies;

• Increases awareness of relevant issues and needs among the immediate ILD community;

• Provides the opportunity to promote and inform policies in the larger health care community in support of those with ILD

Feasibility and challenges of addressing this CQ or CC :

With the establishment of collaborations between several partners, we initiated the PFF Care Center Network and Patient Registry in 2014. The Care Center Network and Patient Registry has since expanded to 21 centers regionally dispersed throughout the United States. The challenges of effectively and efficiently investigating the cause, care and treatment of pulmonary fibrosis are predominantly those of organization and integration of effort. Expertise is present throughout the United States. We suggest that with the continued expansion of the Care Center Network and Patient Registry, those challenges will be overcome and the focus of the fibrosis community efforts can be on diligently investigating the diseases that devastatingly affect patients. An integrated repository of well-phenotyped patients and biologic specimens is the first step in Precision Medicine for patients with interstitial lung disease and pulmonary fibrosis.

Name of idea submitter and other team members who worked on this idea : Gregory P. Cosgrove, MD, The Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation

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Goal 3: Advance Translational Research

Biomarkers of asthma

Need to develop and integrate biomarkers of asthma into phenotype/endotype-driven asthma management algorithms

Submitted by (@nhlbiforumadministrator)

Is this idea a Compelling Question (CQ) or Critical Challenge (CC)? : Critical Challenge (CC)

Name of idea submitter and other team members who worked on this idea : Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA)

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Goal 2: Reduce Human Disease

Disease Severity Biomarkers for Sickle Cell Disease

Can we identify biomarkers that can predict sickle cell disease severity?

Submitted by (@nhlbiforumadministrator)

Is this idea a Compelling Question (CQ) or Critical Challenge (CC)? : Compelling Question (CQ)

Details on the impact of addressing this CQ or CC :

Identifying reliable biomarkers that can predict severity of sickle cell disease could help doctors and patients make better decisions about a wide range of clinical decisions, including weighing the risks vs. benefits of bone marrow transplantation, chemotherapeutic manipulation of Hb F level, and gene therapy, all of which have potentially life-threatening complications.

Feasibility and challenges of addressing this CQ or CC :

Scientific advances make it feasible to identify biomarkers of disease severity. However, identifying biomarkers with good sensitivity and specificity is likely to be a challenge.

Name of idea submitter and other team members who worked on this idea : The Sickle Cell Association of New Jersey

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Goal 2: Reduce Human Disease

Predicting and monitoring atherosclerosis progression and vulnerable plaque

How to develop novel methods for predicting and monitoring atherosclerosis progression and vulnerable plaque including biomarkers and imaging?

Submitted by (@societyforvascularsurgery)

Is this idea a Compelling Question (CQ) or Critical Challenge (CC)? : Compelling Question (CQ)

Name of idea submitter and other team members who worked on this idea : Society for Vascular Surgery

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3 net votes
4 up votes
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Goal 3: Advance Translational Research

Establish COPD Biomarkers

Specific biomarkers to monitor COPD disease activity are needed.

Submitted by (@jsullivan)

Is this idea a Compelling Question (CQ) or Critical Challenge (CC)? : Critical Challenge (CC)

Details on the impact of addressing this CQ or CC :

Much is understood about the pathogenesis of COPD at the cellular and biochemical level. There is no established way these insights can be used to test or implement new medicines. An explicit and economical set of procedures need to be established that will facilitate the development of new medicines and guide their clinical use.

Feasibility and challenges of addressing this CQ or CC :

Many very small studies have identified biomarkers that relate to COPD activity in large groups of patients. There is no clear regulatory path for these insights to lead to tests that can be used with confidence in the development and implementation of novel treatments. Realistic regulatory pathways and criteria should be adopted to facilitate the development biomarkers of disease activity in COPD.

Name of idea submitter and other team members who worked on this idea : COPD Foundation, COPD Biomarkers Qualification Consortium

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Goal 3: Advance Translational Research

Molecular determinants of vascular wall development and aneurysm formation that can be used as markers for early diagnosis

To increase the potential of translating basic research discoveries into the clinic, there is a need to discover molecular biomarkers that confer risk for aneurysms and vascular dissections. The creation of a nation-wide biorepository of well-defined tissue and plasma samples along with research utilizing these tissue samples employing state-of-the art proteomics, genomics and development of appropriate mouse models will ...more »

Submitted by (@dstrickland)

Is this idea a Compelling Question (CQ) or Critical Challenge (CC)? : Critical Challenge (CC)

Details on the impact of addressing this CQ or CC :

The challenge is the coordination of all components of the Project (i.e. development of a national biorepository along with coordination of proteomics and genomics analysis as well as proof of concept in animal models).

Feasibility and challenges of addressing this CQ or CC :

This process is not feasible via the R01 funding mechanisms. The feasibility of addressing this critical challenge is excellent provided adequate resources are provided.

Name of idea submitter and other team members who worked on this idea : Dudley Strickland and Selen Catania Muratoglu

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5 net votes
7 up votes
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Goal 3: Advance Translational Research

Tools to facilitate availability and safe use of innovative blood products and their analogs

Novel blood products are being developed based on innovative science (e.g., ex vivo manufactured RBC and platelets, and platelet and plasma derived hemostatic products). However, there is a significant lag in the development of appropriate tools and model systems, which poses a challenge when evaluating such products for regulatory approval.

Submitted by (@chintamani.atreya)

Is this idea a Compelling Question (CQ) or Critical Challenge (CC)? : Critical Challenge (CC)

Details on the impact of addressing this CQ or CC :

The rapid advancement in science and technology has identified pathways for ex vivo manufacturing of RBC and platelets; platelet and plasma derived hemostatic products and recombinant coagulation factors, etc. However, these novel products have to be evaluated for their safety, efficacy, purity and potency as part of regulatory approval process. Because the new products are manufactured using innovative technologies some of the existing tools for their evaluation are inadequate. Therefore, future investments in the development of necessary predictive tools (I.e. regulatory science tools) in areas such as the following will positively impact the availability and safe use of innovative blood products and their analogs: 1) the development of analytical and biochemical assays, 2) animal models for product safety and efficacy, 3) product quality-associated biomarkers to characterize storage lesions of RBC and platelets and 4) functional assays and molecular and bioinformatics models that can predict the success of novel blood products both during manufacturing and with respect to clinical patient outcomes.

Feasibility and challenges of addressing this CQ or CC :

This initiative is feasible as investigators in blood organizations, academia and government are already working independently towards this goal in their defined areas of study. However, a coordinated effort among these independent entities could help in the faster development of necessary regulatory science tools to optimize care of individual patients and patient groups.

Name of idea submitter and other team members who worked on this idea : Office of Blood Research and Review, CBER, FDA

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17 up votes
5 down votes
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Goal 2: Reduce Human Disease

Early COPD

What does early COPD actually look like. This is defined as severe COPD 30 years prior to its manifestation.

Submitted by (@davidmannino)

Is this idea a Compelling Question (CQ) or Critical Challenge (CC)? : Critical Challenge (CC)

Details on the impact of addressing this CQ or CC :

Prevention programs in COPD either target smoking or those with established disease. Better understanding the factors that lead to the development of COPD (both in ever and never smokers) is critical to improved disease prevention.

Feasibility and challenges of addressing this CQ or CC :

We need to revisit long term studies in novel ways- and look at new cohorts. Better biomarkers need to be developed.

Name of idea submitter and other team members who worked on this idea : Dave Mannino

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31 up votes
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Goal 2: Reduce Human Disease

Challenge

Genetic or biologic makers that predict outcomes in pulmonary fibrosis are needed.

Validated animal models of lung fibrosis that better resemble the human condition are needed to speed up the drug development process.

An international patient registry is needed to help promote understanding of the natural history of pulmonary fibrosis and real-world impacts of interventions.

Submitted by (@swigrisj)

Is this idea a Compelling Question (CQ) or Critical Challenge (CC)? : Critical Challenge (CC)

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Goal 1: Promote Human Health

Understanding Individual Differences in Responses to Sleep Loss

Individuals differ substantially in their physiological, health, behavioral and cognitive responses to sleep loss. Although these differences represent a trait, individuals who are vulnerable in one domain may be resilient in another - few systematic relationships between physiological, long-term health, cognitive and subjective responses to sleep loss have been found. Moreover, within a given domain, vulnerability to ...more »

Submitted by (@hvd000)

Is this idea a Compelling Question (CQ) or Critical Challenge (CC)? : Compelling Question (CQ)

Details on the impact of addressing this CQ or CC :

Addressing this CQ is a sine-qua-non for individualized medicine. Especially in the case of physiological and long-term health responses to sleep loss, the differential vulnerability trait and the underlying mechanisms are not well characterized. However, as seen in the cognitive domain, investigating individual differences can help elucidate the underlying mechanisms. Thus, this should be a fruitful line of research not only in the context of individual differences per se, but also for better understanding the link(s) between sleep loss and adverse health outcomes in general.

Feasibility and challenges of addressing this CQ or CC :

This CQ can be addressed by adopting a systems (neuro)biology approach in which individual differences are considered at the systems components level rather than the whole organism level. For example, the task-dependence of individual differences in vulnerability to cognitive impairment due to sleep loss may be investigated at the level of neuronal circuits that subserve performance of the task at hand, rather than at (or in conjunction with) the whole brain / genetic level. A significant challenge in this regard is that in the case of physiological and health responses to sleep loss, the differential vulnerability trait and the underlying mechanisms are not yet well characterized. See "Details On The Impact Of Addressing This CQ".

Name of idea submitter and other team members who worked on this idea : 1

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Goal 3: Advance Translational Research

Maximizing anti-tumor immunity following allogeneic HCT with biomarkers

Allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (allo-HCT) is one of the most effective forms of tumor immunotherapy available to date. Allo-HCT can be life-saving for patients with aggressive malignancies that cannot be cured through other strategies. The immunotherapeutic efficacy of allo-HCT depends on donor T cell recognition of alloantigens on leukemic cells, which is known as the graft-versus-tumor effect (GVT). No ...more »

Submitted by (@sophpacz)

Is this idea a Compelling Question (CQ) or Critical Challenge (CC)? : Critical Challenge (CC)

Details on the impact of addressing this CQ or CC :

Allo-HCT represents the only curative therapy for a number of malignant disorders but often results in serious complications, including GVHD. Because GVHD is such a potentially devastating post-transplant complication and because we want to be able to separate GVHD from the GVT effect, it is crucial to try to determine a specific biological pattern link to the favorable GVT effect. The focus of this critical challenge will be to develop a novel, non-invasive GVT signature in patients undergoing HCT. If successful, this will have a major impact, because a GVT-specific proteomic signature may facilitate the clinical therapeutic decision of rapid taper of immunosuppression or increased immunotherapies. The ability to identify patients who will not develop GVT early post-transplant has important therapeutic consequences, including preventative care with donor-lymphocyte infusion (DLI) or tumor-specific vaccines or T cells expressing chimeric antigen receptors (CARs). Equally important is the identification of patients who will develop GVT without GVHD, potentially enabling more rapid tapering of immunosuppressive regimens and thereby promoting even more the GVT reaction as well as reducing long-term toxicity in these patients. With this diagnostic tool, the HCT community may plan to develop preemptive therapeutic trials. In addition, the biomarkers may represent potential GVT-specific therapeutic targets to maximize GVT and/or immunotherapies.

Feasibility and challenges of addressing this CQ or CC :

Using proteomics, several GVHD biomarkers were recently identified and validated. For example, high suppression of tumorigenicity 2 (ST2) plasma concentrations were significantly associated with the incidence of GVHD and transplant-related mortality in recipients of unmanipulated graft and cord blood transplants. Consequently, the Blood and Marrow Transplant Clinical Trial network is currently pursuing therapeutic interventions for newly diagnosed GVHD patients based on GVHD biomarkers risk-stratification. Thus, discovering and validating biomarkers post-HCT is feasible. However, the challenges with GVT-specific biomarkers are three-fold: 1) the absence of phenotype, as the only way to define clinical GVT without GVHD, is the absence of relapse and no GVHD post-HCT; 2) the paucity of samples to study GVT, ideally samples following DLI or nonmyeloablative conditioning preparative regimens that permit stable engraftment of donor hematopoietic cells but have little or no direct tumoricidal activity should be available; and 3) the relative lack of knowledge of the biology of GVT. These represent important challenges to solve. In sum, the recent successes of cancer immunotherapies, particularly for the treatment of hematological malignancies, have stimulated interest in the potential widespread application of these approaches, and biomarkers to predict and monitor the responses are required.

Name of idea submitter and other team members who worked on this idea : Sophie Paczesny

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