Applied Bimatics - An Informatics & eHealth Blog

I am a clinician with a passion for informatics. This blog is about my eHealth journey exploring interoperability in Electronic Medical Records (EMR/EHR), Patient Safety, Pharmacovigilance, Data Analytics, Clinical Research and Bioinformatics in a clinical context. Comparing Canadian, Indian and Middle Eastern healthcare systems and services. Join our open facebook group here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/clinical.bioinformaticians/


Researchers discover genetic basis for Atopic Dermatitis

Atopic dermatitis
Atopic dermatitis (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Atopic Dermatitis is a complex skin disorder characterised by chronic, inflammatory disease of the skin that starts at early childhood. The skin of patients with AD is characterized by a thinner epidermis, less mature surface corneocytes, dehydration, and an increased TEWL. The below article claims the discovery of the underlying genetic cause of atopic dermatitis.(1) In reality the referenced article in PLOS One studied the importance of Ctip2 in epidermal homeostasis and barrier function in mouse embryo.(2) The importance of the transcription factor Ctip2 in epidermal lipid metabolism has already been reported.(3) Though Ctip2 could be important in the control of many of the pathogenic mechanisms responsible for the skin changes in Atopic Dermatitis, whether we have found the genetic key for this complex disorder, the first step in the atopic march, followed by food allergy, asthma, and allergic rhinitis is still open to debate. Atopic diathesis is more likely to be multifactorial.

Here is CTIP2 on GenBank: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/protein/AAF63683.1
If you find anything interesting please comment here.


(1)Researchers discover genetic basis for eczema, new avenue to therapies
(2) http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0051262
(3) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23096701

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Combining Clinical Trials

English: Icon representing Bayesian statistics
English: Icon representing Bayesian statistics (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
BMC Medical Research Methodology | Abstract | Bayesian methods in clinical trials: a Bayesian analysis of ECOG trials E1684 and E1690:

Happy new year to all!

I have always wondered how to effectively combine data from a previous similar clinical trial into a new trial. If this is not attempted, the wealth of information already collected will be wasted. Besides if the trials give conflicting results, the entire effort in conducting both trials is lost and you end up with only confusion. The authors here have conceived a method to effectively combine data from similar trials conducted at different times using the Bayesian method. In short, the older trial is used to generate the prior probability distribution for the analysis of the new results. The methodology has been used in Melanoma studies. (I am happy that it is from my domain). I have also experimented with Bayesian methodology before.

I give 4 peels to this idea. (Pardon me for using a grading system envisaged for a different cause!)
GulfDoctor.net peel rating
My Rating: 4 peels
What is peel score?


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About Me

As a Dermatologist and Informatician my research mainly involves application of bioinformatics techniques and tools in dermatological conditions. However my research interests are varied and I have publications in areas ranging from artificial intelligence, sequence analysis, systems biology, ontology development, microarray analysis, immunology, computational biology and clinical dermatology. I am also interested in eHealth, Health Informatics and Health Policy.

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Bell Raj Eapen
Hamilton, ON
Canada