Catalyst Newsletter, October 2014
MCIRCC teams up with AirStrip and IBM to Pioneer Early Patient Warning Technology Using Real-Time Analytics
AllianceOn September 8, MCIRCC and AirStrip signed a master alliance agreement for a product development collaboration that will initially focus on creating a commercially viable clinical decision support (CDS) platform specific to the MCIRCC Critical Care Pilot Project. As you already know, back in August the Executive Vice President for Medical Affairs (EVPMA) Cabinet approved an advanced analytic platform purchase from IBM for this very same pilot project. In addition, IBM and AirStrip have recently formed a contractual relationship with one another.

This pilot project, known as the Analytic for Hemodynamic Instability (AHI), features a data analytic that predicts hemodynamic instability with ICU patients before it is visually apparent. Hemodynamic instability is when blood flow drops and deprives the body of needed oxygen resulting in one of the most common causes of death for critically ill or injured patients. Unlike the current approach of monitoring patients at certain intervals, this data analytic would detect the early onset of hemodynamic instability and alert key medical personnel to facilitate early intervention and could therefore increase patient survival.

The MCIRCC, IBM and AirStrip alliance and its clinical decision support initiative was unveiled to news media during the 2014 Health 2.0 Fall Conference, a showcase for cutting-edge technologies transforming health and healthcare, September 21-24 in Santa Clara, CA. And just last week, a press release was issued on October 22 formally announcing the alliance.

To summarize, MCIRCC and AirStrip will work to co-develop a mobile monitoring solution, using IBM's streaming analytics technology, that combines data from electronic medical records, body sensors and other sources, with predictive analytics to deliver critical health insights to doctors' mobile devices. MCIRCC is developing the advanced analytics and testing its ability to identify and predict hemodynamic instability for early intervention of at-risk patients. If successful, this clinical decision support tool could transition beyond critical care into comprehensive hospital-to-home care models.

Click here to read the full press release and to learn more about the MCIRCC, AirStrip and IBM alliance.

This is indeed an exciting time, but it is only the beginning. The potential for AHI to measurably impact the lives of patients and reduce healthcare costs is considerable, which highlights the significance of our alliance with AirStrip and IBM.
MCIRCC Member Voices: It's Time to Fight Sepsis Like we Fight Heart Attack
National quality standards and accountability needed to improve care of life-threatening condition.
SepsisA decade ago, America's health care community took on heart attacks with gusto, harnessing the power of research and data to ensure that every patient got the best possible care.

It worked: Death rates for heart attack have dropped. The same has happened with heart failure and pneumonia. Now, say MCIRCC members Jack Iwashyna, M.D., Ph.D., and Colin Cooke, M.D., M.Sc., M.S., it's time to do the same for sepsis.

In a new viewpoint article in the Journal of the American Medical Association, the authors lay out the case for a national system that would hold hospitals and care teams accountable for sepsis diagnosis and care.

To read the full announcement visit the UMHS website.
Best in the air & on the ground: U-M Survival Flight team wins international competition
Flight nurses Jeff Thomas and Chad Stoller beat U.S. & Canada teams in test of critical care skills.
Survival_FlightA car crash throws a pregnant woman out onto the pavement, gravely wounded - and about to have a baby who will also need immediate life-saving treatment. A medical helicopter lands nearby, and two flight nurses in blue jumpsuits rush to the scene. After treating the woman and delivering the baby, they load their patients onto the waiting helicopter, and speed away at 175 miles an hour toward the University of Michigan Health System's medical campus.

Or at least they would have, if this had been an actual emergency.

Instead, it was a very realistic scenario for a simulated emergency - part of a competition that tested the skills and knowledge of a U-M Survival Flight crew and their colleagues from the U.S. and Canada.

When the competition was over, the Survival Flight team emerged victorious, bringing home the program's fifth international title in the 13 years the competition has been held.

To read the full story, click here.

Congressman Fred Upton visits MCIRCC
Dr. Ward explains the Resonance Raman Spectroscopy.
Congressman_UptonOn October 10, Congressman Fred Upton (MI-06) stopped at MCIRCC during his visit to the University of Michigan as part of the 21st Century Cures initiative, which aims to accelerate the pace of cures and medical breakthroughs in the United States. This initiative is sponsored by the House Committee on Energy & Commerce, chaired by Upton, which also oversees much of America's funding for scientific research.

The 21st Century Cures initiative
"will take a comprehensive look - from discovery to development to delivery - to determine what steps we can take to ensure we are taking full advantage of the advances this country has made in science and technology and use these resources to keep America as the innovation capital of the world."

This strategy resonates with MCIRCC because our vision is to transform critical care medicine through multidisciplinary integration and industry partnerships for improved patient care and outcomes. This approach has the best chance of creating and accelerating game-changing technologies from bench to bedside.

Upton's visit is significant because his 21st Century Cures initiative recognizes that while science moves swiftly forward, new approaches must be developed that close the gap between advances in scientific knowledge and technology implementation. During his visit, MCIRCC underscored that changes could be made to the current federal drug and device approval process and NIH investment mechanisms to better align with innovation goals. The creation of a NIH-based institute or program dedicated to critical care could also have a major impact on the larger healthcare ecosystem.

The visit opened with MCIRCC Executive Director Kevin Ward, MD presenting the critical care story and how MCIRCC aims to transform care delivery. This was followed by two product demonstrations of solutions under development involving new vital signs and non-invasive patient monitoring technologies.
Congressman Upton, far left, looks on as Dr. Ward explains how the vascular dynamics monitoring system collects data from a patient.

The first was a Resonance Raman Spectroscopy, which takes non-invasive measurements of tissue hemoglobin oxygen saturation for early intervention. This device could replace a highly invasive procedure with a potentially safer, cost-effective alternative that could be more desirable for both patients and medical staff.

The second demonstration was a vascular dynamics monitoring system that marries a non-invasive sensor technology with advanced data analytics and signal processing to identify and monitor new vital signs. This technology aims to detect changes in a patient's health condition for early intervention that could result in improved outcomes at reduced costs.

All in all, it was a productive visit. MCIRCC was able to share its thoughts on closing the gaps with critical care delivery given today's federal funding models alongside the regulatory landscape.

Click here to learn more about Congressman Upton's U-M visit.
Innovation: Sepsis showcases Grand Challenge headway
Kevin Ward (left) and Shuichi Takayama congratulate the Grand Challenge teams.
Innovation_SepsisMCIRCC members gathered on October 16 for Innovation: Sepsis,
a 6th-grade-science-fair-style event featuring tabletop presentations by the six Grand Challenge teams. 

Members were welcomed by MCIRCC Executive Director,
Kevin Ward, and Associate Director, Shuichi Takayama, who toasted to the significant impact the teams' research will have on sepsis patients.

The six teams devised innovative solutions to challenges faced in the treatment of sepsis, comprising:
  • a sensor that captures vascular dynamics information and analyzes data to determine signs of early septic shock;
  • a blood test to rapidly identify bacteria by reading its DNA "fingerprint";
  • an endotheliopathy assessment panel, utilizing optofluidics, to monitor real-time endothelial cell damage to determine sepsis severity and progression;
  • a redox microfluidic device to detect sepsis severity and gauge response to therapy;
  • a unique sustained delivery and monitoring system for a protein (IL-15) that stimulates T cell production; and
  • ultrasound technology measuring lung strain to address fluid status and mechanical ventilation optimization.
Dean Woolliscroft learns about the Endotheliopathy Assessment Panel project.
Teams manned their stations, answering questions and conducting demonstrations of their work. Attendees saw first-hand the progress enabled by MCIRCC in getting medical innovations from the bench to bedside.


The event also provided a forum for attendees from across disciplines to discuss their work and network with peers to foster collaboration and stimulate new ideas.

As the evening concluded, members departed with not only a greater understanding of the Grand Challenge projects, but an excitement from sharing ideas and making connections with like-minded individuals looking to make a difference in critical care.
NSF Announces RAPID Grants for
Ebola-related Research
RAPID_GrantsIn light of the recent emergence of the Ebola virus in the U.S., the National Science Foundation is accepting proposals to conduct non-medical, non-clinical care research that can be used immediately to better understand how to model and understand the spread of Ebola, educate about prophylactic behaviors, and encourage the development of products, processes, and learning that can address this global challenge. Since sepsis often develops as the body tries to fight Ebola infection, this opportunity may be a good match for certain MCIRCC member faculty.

Researchers are invited to use the Rapid Response Research (RAPID) funding mechanism, which allows NSF to receive and review proposals having a severe urgency with regard to availability of, or access to data, facilities or specialized equipment, as well as quick-response research on natural or anthropogenic disasters and similar unanticipated events. 

What you need to know
  • Requests may be up to $200K and of one year in duration
  • There is no solicitation
  • There are no fixed deadlines
  • Only internal merit review is required
  • The Project Description is expected to be brief (two to five pages) and must include:
    • clear statements as to why the proposed research is of an urgent nature
    • why a RAPID award would be the most appropriate mechanism for supporting the proposed work
  • PI(s) must contact the NSF program officer(s) whose expertise is most germane to the proposal topic before submitting a proposal to determine whether it is appropriate for RAPID funding. 
Click here for complete guidance on submitting RAPID proposals.

For more information contact MCIRCC's Proposal Development Manager, Jaine Place.
AHA Announces Winter Funding Opportunities
AHA_GrantsThe American Heart Association (AHA) has announced its winter deadlines for research grants. The AHA funds research broadly related to cardiovascular disease and stroke, including research in clinical and basic sciences, bioengineering, biotechnology
and public health. 

National program investigators are also encouraged to submit applications related to obesity, women and heart disease, and resuscitation. No specific percent or dollar amount of national research funds has been set aside for these focused research areas. Proposals will go through the customary peer review process with fundability determined by peer review criteria, independent of the science areas of interest.

Below is a list of funding opportunities and deadlines with links to the award descriptions on the AHA website. 

The web-based submission process will open November 15
Midwest Affiliate - DEADLINE: January 14, 2015

National - DEADLINE: January 22, 2015
U-M Training & Events
November 5
11:00 am - 1:00 pm
NCRC, Building 18

The NCRC Expo provides an opportunity for the NCRC community to collaborate and learn more about the NCRC service providers.

November 19
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
DOW Auditorium, Towsley Center 

Join the Fast Forward Medical Innovation team as they welcome Uday Kumar, M.D. from Stanford University and Third Rock Ventures, a ground-breaking clinician researcher taking innovation to the world stage through biodesign. Box lunch provided.

Register here for this free event.

December 10
5:30 pm - 6:30 pm
NRCR, Bldg 10, G063 & 64

What is needed before engaging with industry? How do I protect my idea? When should I talk to the Tech Transfer Office? What do industry reps want to hear? Join the Fast Forward Medical Innovation team for this seminar on best practices for presenting your innovative idea to industry.

Register here for this free event.

December 17
12:30 pm - 1:30 pm
Free webinar

What does a Non-Disclosure Agreement protect? When should a Non-Disclosure Agreement be in place? Who can help with a Non-Disclosure Agreement? Join us as we reveal the secrets of a Non-Disclosure Agreement and help Principal Investigators manage important conversations with potential partners.

Register here for this free event.

New MCIRCC Sepsis Brochure

A comprehensive tool to narrate the complex and life-threatening sepsis story and how our Grand Challenge portfolio seeks to transform the way we diagnose, treat and monitor sepsis to improve patient care and outcomes, enhance the clinician experience and reduce healthcare costs.

Don't forget your MCIRCC affiliation!

If you are speaking with the media about your work in critical care research or are working with the U-M News Service or U-M Health System Public Relations on a health care related press release, article, or other news item, please mention your MCIRCC affiliation!

U-M Center for Integrative Research in Critical Care (MCIRCC) is one of the world's first comprehensive research enterprises devoted to transforming critical care medicine by accelerating science and moving it from bench to bedside. To do this, MCIRCC brings together integrative teams comprised of world-class U-M scientists, clinicians, and engineers with industry partners and funding sources to develop and deploy cutting-edge solutions that elevate the care, outcomes, and quality of life of critically ill and injured patients and their families.