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The Medicine Innovation Program supports and enhances innovation within the Department of Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital.
The Medicine Innovation Program (MIP) was developed as a crucial component of the Department of Medicine’s support of the culture and practice of innovation. The MIP (formerly known as the Innovation Task Force), was formed in 2015 and is charged with accelerating the development and introduction of broadly applicable innovative ideas and cost effective technologies into the patient/provider community both within and outside of Massachusetts General Hospital and the Department of Medicine - including information technology, and care delivery to device and drug approaches. The MIP is led by Director Christiana Iyasere MD, MBA and co-Director Mark Poznansky MD, PhD.
Christiana Iyasere, MD, MBA and Mark Poznansky, MD, PhD discuss the MIP Innovation Grants
Christiana Iyesere, MD, MBA is the Director of the Medicine Innovation Program. She is an established leader in the creation and implementation of platforms and projects that enhance and innovate across medicine and health care. A graduate of Yale University, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, and Harvard University Business School, Dr. Iyasere served as a Howard Hughes Research Fellow in HIV Immunology for the Laboratory of Immunoregulation at the National Institutes of Health before completing her Internal Medicine Residency at Massachusetts General Hospital and serving a year as an Administrative Fellow alongside Dr. Peter Slavin and Harry Demonaco, leading a series of projects related to optimal technology adoption and utilization. She has served in such prominent roles as Co-Director of the MGH Innovation Support Center; Associate Director of “The Sandbox,” a clinical innovation site; Technology Assessment Coordinator for the Council for Technology, Adoption, Innovation and Promotion; and Chair of the Mass General Innovation Collaborative. She is a member of the Partners Innovation Council and the Partners Epic Innovation Council. Dr. Iyasere is an Instructor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School.
Mark C. Poznansky MD, PhD is the co-Director of the Medicine Innovation Program. Dr. Poznansky is an Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. He is an Attending Physician in Infectious Diseases, serves on the Commercialization Council, and is the Director of the Vaccine and Immunotherapy Center (VIC) at Massachusetts General Hospital. Dr. Poznansky is the discoverer of fugetaxis, the principle of immuno-repulsion that forms the basis of the company’s products. His laboratory defines molecular mechanisms for novel immune processes and explores the relevance of these mechanisms to novel approaches to vaccines and immunotherapies for cancer, infectious diseases and diabetes. Dr. Poznansky and his team at VIC have focused on the translation of novel vaccines and immunotherapies from discovery to first-in-human studies and is funded by the JDRF, NIH, DOD and philanthropy. He is the scientific founder of a number of spinoff biotech companies including Celtaxsys and ACTx. He is also a consultant to K2 Therapeutics and was formerly a scientific consultant to Novelos and the St. Joseph’s Translational Research Institute in Atlanta.
The Medicine Innovation Pilot Grant Awards take research projects with the potential to transform medicine and provides them with the needed resources to move forward to the next inflection point in successful solution development. Resources provided include structured project management support, milestone based stewardship of resources, focused mentorship and access to networks that can move the project to the next step in development. The goal is to move from a project to a product that can be consumed and used by patients and providers.
MIP actively supports projects for one year to 18 months depending on the needs of the project and project team.
In its inaugural year and following a competitive selection process for the inaugural Innovation Pilot Grant Awards, the MIP supported three projects including an early stage drug for treatment of Hypoparathyroidism, a device based therapy for urinary tract infections, and redesign of the cardiac catheterization lab patient consent process. These projects have gone on to attain follow-on grant funding, successful adoption and are transitioning through proof of concept.
MIP is proud to announce the 2017 Innovation Pilot Grant Winners and to continue to support the mission of providing funding and intensive project support to winning ideas:
Areej El-Jawahri, MD (co-sponsored by the mLab)Psychological Intervention Application (App) for Patients with Acute Myeloid Leukemia
Thomas McCoy, MDMachine Learning for Reusable Biomedical Knowledge Representation at the Bedside
Marc Wein, MD, PhDPreclinical Development of a New Osteo-Anabolic Drug to Treat Osteoporosis
Kimberly Blumenthal, MD (co-sponsored by the Healthcare Transformation Lab)Mobile Health for Improving Allergy Documentation and Safe Prescribing
Satoshi Kashiwagi, MD, PhD (co-sponsored by the Vaccine Immunotherapy Center)Near Infrared Laser to Augment Antigen Specific Tolerance
Douglas Kwon, MD, PhDDiagnostic Device for Culture Free, Rapid Identification and Speciation of Bacterial Infections
Jeffrey Gelfand, MD: Photodynamic Therapy System for Prevention and Treatment of UTIs in Neurogenic Bladder
Michael Mannstadt, MD: Long-Acting PTH for Treatment of Patients with Hypoparathyroidism
Integration of Predictive Models to Support Clinical Decision Making in the Routine Care of Patients Undergoing Percutaneous Coronary Intervention (co-sponsored by the Healthcare Transformation Lab)
Areej El-Jawahri, MD, Director of the Bone Marrow Transplant Survivorship Program at Mass General and a medical oncologist specializing in the in the care of patients with hematologic malignancies has developed a novel approach to engaging, educating, and caring for patients recently diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML). The goal of her project is to develop a self-administered, multi-component, mobile tablet psychological intervention application (app) for patients with AML receiving intensive chemotherapy. Patients with a new diagnosis of AML confront substantial psychological symptoms as they cope with a sudden and life-threatening diagnosis that requires immediate disruption of their lives, and an urgent 4-6 week hospitalization to initiate intensive chemotherapy; this intervention is designed to help ease the transition and help patients understand what to expect. The app and the study of its use will be one of the first of its kind, as there are no studies investigating psychological interventions to address the needs of this vulnerable population. Through the support of the Medicine Innovation Program and the mLab, Dr. El-Jawahri will develop and test this app with the goal of improving patients’ mood and other patient-reported outcomes.
Thomas McCoy, MD researches the intersection of machine learning and electronic medical records as a way to understand previously unrealized connections between patients and their disease entity. His research reformulates the application of EHR data to current clinical questions as a search problem (i.e., "who is similar to my patient and in what ways?"), instead of a classification problem (i.e., "which of our patients have diagnosis X?") with the goal of better realizing the potential of EHR data to improve patient diagnosis, risk stratification and treatment personalization. Through the MIP grant he will create a clinical application of his novel patient search based approach for use by clinicians on the wards in the hopes of providing novel patient care insights.
Marc Wein, MD, PhD, a researcher in the Division of Endocrinology at Mass General, studies the mechanisms behind osteoporosis and other metabolic bone diseases. Through mechanistic studies to understand how parathyroid hormone works (PTH), his lab discovered that a crucial step in PTH function is inhibition of a kinase called SIK2. Further, he and others have identified a small molecule SIK2 inhibitor that could serve as one of the first orally available drugs to treat osteoporosis that increases bone mass. Through the Medicine Innovation Program, he will continue work on this novel small molecule SIK2 inhibitor to determine the potential therapeutic potential of this drug in humans.
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