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BioMed ; 1(1):41-49, 2021.
Article in English | MDPI | ID: covidwho-1367769


Background: The current pandemic has led to a proliferation of predictive models being developed to address various aspects of COVID-19 patient care. We aimed to develop an online platform that would serve as an open source repository for a curated subset of such models, and provide a simple interface for included models to allow for online calculation. This platform would support doctors during decision-making regarding diagnoses, prognoses, and follow-up of COVID-19 patients, expediting the models’ transition from research to clinical practice. Methods: In this pilot study, we performed a literature search in the PubMed and WHO databases to find suitable models for implementation on our platform. All selected models were publicly available (peer reviewed publications or open source repository) and had been validated (TRIPOD type 3 or 2b). We created a method for obtaining the regression coefficients if only the nomogram was available in the original publication. All predictive models were transcribed on a practical graphical user interface using PHP 8.0.0, and were published online together with supporting documentation and links to the associated articles. Results: The open source website currently incorporates nine models from six different research groups, evaluated on datasets from different countries. The website will continue to be populated with other models related to COVID-19 prediction as these become available. This dynamic platform allows COVID-19 researchers to contact us to have their model curated and included on our website, thereby increasing the reach and real-world impact of their work. Conclusion: We have successfully demonstrated in this pilot study that our website provides an inclusive platform for predictive models related to COVID-19. It enables doctors to supplement their judgment with patient-specific predictions from externally validated models in a user-friendly format. Additionally, this platform supports researchers in showcasing their work, which will increase the visibility and use of their models.

J Pers Med ; 11(4)2021 Apr 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1186995


BACKGROUND: Searching through the COVID-19 research literature to gain actionable clinical insight is a formidable task, even for experts. The usefulness of this corpus in terms of improving patient care is tied to the ability to see the big picture that emerges when the studies are seen in conjunction rather than in isolation. When the answer to a search query requires linking together multiple pieces of information across documents, simple keyword searches are insufficient. To answer such complex information needs, an innovative artificial intelligence (AI) technology named a knowledge graph (KG) could prove to be effective. METHODS: We conducted an exploratory literature review of KG applications in the context of COVID-19. The search term used was "covid-19 knowledge graph". In addition to PubMed, the first five pages of search results for Google Scholar and Google were considered for inclusion. Google Scholar was used to include non-peer-reviewed or non-indexed articles such as pre-prints and conference proceedings. Google was used to identify companies or consortiums active in this domain that have not published any literature, peer-reviewed or otherwise. RESULTS: Our search yielded 34 results on PubMed and 50 results each on Google and Google Scholar. We found KGs being used for facilitating literature search, drug repurposing, clinical trial mapping, and risk factor analysis. CONCLUSIONS: Our synopses of these works make a compelling case for the utility of this nascent field of research.

PLoS One ; 16(4): e0249920, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1186609


OBJECTIVE: To establish whether one can build a mortality prediction model for COVID-19 patients based solely on demographics and comorbidity data that outperforms age alone. Such a model could be a precursor to implementing smart lockdowns and vaccine distribution strategies. METHODS: The training cohort comprised 2337 COVID-19 inpatients from nine hospitals in The Netherlands. The clinical outcome was death within 21 days of being discharged. The features were derived from electronic health records collected during admission. Three feature selection methods were used: LASSO, univariate using a novel metric, and pairwise (age being half of each pair). 478 patients from Belgium were used to test the model. All modeling attempts were compared against an age-only model. RESULTS: In the training cohort, the mortality group's median age was 77 years (interquartile range = 70-83), higher than the non-mortality group (median = 65, IQR = 55-75). The incidence of former/active smokers, male gender, hypertension, diabetes, dementia, cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, chronic cardiac disease, chronic neurological disease, and chronic kidney disease was higher in the mortality group. All stated differences were statistically significant after Bonferroni correction. LASSO selected eight features, novel univariate chose five, and pairwise chose none. No model was able to surpass an age-only model in the external validation set, where age had an AUC of 0.85 and a balanced accuracy of 0.77. CONCLUSION: When applied to an external validation set, we found that an age-only mortality model outperformed all modeling attempts (curated on using three feature selection methods on 22 demographic and comorbid features.

COVID-19/mortality , Age Factors , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Belgium/epidemiology , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , Cohort Studies , Communicable Disease Control , Comorbidity , Electronic Health Records , Female , Hospitalization , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Netherlands/epidemiology , Prognosis , Risk Assessment , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification