JP Onnela – Paper on New Research Platform

Assistant Professor JP Onnela, with colleagues Jeanette Lorme, Matthew Kiang, and John Torous published a paper last week on “New Tools for New Research in Psychiatry: A Scalable and Customizable Platform to Empower Data Driven Smartphone Research.”  The paper describes the development of the Beiwe Research Platform as part of JP’s ongoing work in digital phenotyping supported by the NIH Director’s New Innovator Award. 

The paper describes how a longstanding barrier to progress in psychiatry, both in clinical settings and research trials, has been the persistent difficulty of accurately measuring patient-centered outcomes in order to better quantify disease phenotypes. Mobile phone technology combined with data science has the potential to offer medicine a wealth of additional information on disease phenotypes, but the large majority of existing smartphone apps are not intended for use as biomedical research platforms and, as such, do not generate research-quality data. The aim of the Beiwe Research Platform is to establish a platform to collect research-quality smartphone raw sensor and usage pattern data. The ultimate goal of the project is to develop statistical, mathematical, and computational methodology to enable researchers to extract biomedical and clinical insights from smartphone data. 

  Read the paper now!