Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

An entire country's disease development: Researchers map route from illness to illness

Date:
June 24, 2014
Source:
University of Copenhagen
Summary:
Researchers have followed six million Danes for 15 years through patient and disease registers. Studies in the complex data landscape now enable researchers to pinpoint very busy routes for widespread diseases such as cancer, arthritis and diabetes. This is the first time that researchers have analyzed big data relating to an entire country's disease development.

This is the first time that researchers have analyzed big data relating to an entire country's disease development. The new ground-breaking results are based on data from 6.2 million Danes who were followed for 14.9 years -- using state-of-the-art systems biology, researchers have boiled down the massive amount of data to 1,171 so-called thoroughfares with central information on the course of diabetes, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, cancer, arthritis and cardiovascular disease. The researchers are, in other words, able to forecast whether you are driving on a risky highway to hell with an acute need for rerouting to improve your health.

Data unveiling an entire life story

We can see clear correlations that have not previously been explained; a disease like gout, for example, is strongly linked to cardiovascular diseases when we look at the large data volumes and the disease networks that appear. It is a surprising correlation that researchers have been debating previously. The quicker we identify an inappropriate pattern, the better we can prevent and treat critical diseases. In the future, we will be able to predict many diseases using simple tests in combination with known disease progression patterns, says Søren Brunak, Professor at the Technical University of Denmark and the Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Protein Research, University of Copenhagen.

The large data volumes have been obtained from, for example, electronic patient records. In the long term, the clinical data can be combined with molecular data, where the researchers will map the correlations between DNA and proteins in the body and specific diseases using state-of-the-art computer technology:

Our results make it possible to view diseases in a larger context. Instead of looking at each disease in isolation, you can talk about a complex system with many different interacting factors. By looking at the order in which different diseases appear, you can start to draw patterns and see complex correlations outlining the direction for each individual person, says Anders Boeck Jensen, postdoc at the Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Protein Research, University of Copenhagen.

The days of 'one size fits all' are over

In the future, individualized treatment will be gaining ground, i.e. treatment that takes into account the individual patient's entire genome and proteome. Denmark is at the forefront of tailored medical treatment. Danes are a homogeneous population, and the country's unified healthcare sector, including the civil registration system, is a unique setup that makes it possible to follow patients over a lifetime.

The perspective is that your genetic profile or the total network of associated proteins in your body, your proteome, can be mapped in a few years' time, enabling you to suddenly learn things about yourself which can be used to forecast the progress of diseases over an entire lifetime. I believe in a bright future, because we can improve the quality of life and extend life in the long run -- as well as save money as a society -- if we offer people a more effective and targeted treatment, says Professor Lars Juhl Jensen from the Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Protein Research.

Professor Søren Brunak adds: -- Your genetic data might find their way to your health insurance card or a database which your doctor can access. This requires, of course, thorough analysis of the data obtained from DNA and protein sequencing in the coming years.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Copenhagen. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Anders Boeck Jensen, Pope L. Moseley, Tudor I. Oprea, Sabrina Gade Ellesøe, Robert Eriksson, Henriette Schmock, Peter Bjødstrup Jensen, Lars Juhl Jensen, Søren Brunak. Temporal disease trajectories condensed from population-wide registry data covering 6.2 million patients. Nature Communications, 2014; 5 DOI: 10.1038/ncomms5022

Cite This Page:

University of Copenhagen. "An entire country's disease development: Researchers map route from illness to illness." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 24 June 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/06/140624140601.htm>.
University of Copenhagen. (2014, June 24). An entire country's disease development: Researchers map route from illness to illness. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/06/140624140601.htm
University of Copenhagen. "An entire country's disease development: Researchers map route from illness to illness." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/06/140624140601.htm (accessed September 1, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Monday, September 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Get on Your Bike! London Cycling Popularity Soars Despite Danger

Get on Your Bike! London Cycling Popularity Soars Despite Danger

AFP (Sep. 1, 2014) — Wedged between buses, lorries and cars, cycling in London isn't for the faint hearted. Nevertheless the number of people choosing to bike in the British capital has doubled over the past 15 years. Duration: 02:27 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Can You Train Your Brain To Eat Healthy?

Can You Train Your Brain To Eat Healthy?

Newsy (Sep. 1, 2014) — New research says if you condition yourself to eat healthy foods, eventually you'll crave them instead of junk food. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
We've Got Mites Living In Our Faces And So Do You

We've Got Mites Living In Our Faces And So Do You

Newsy (Aug. 30, 2014) — A new study suggests 100 percent of adult humans (those over 18 years of age) have Demodex mites living in their faces. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Liberia Continues Fight Against Ebola

Liberia Continues Fight Against Ebola

AFP (Aug. 30, 2014) — Authorities in Liberia try to stem the spread of the Ebola epidemic by raising awareness and setting up sanitation units for people to wash their hands. Duration: 00:41 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins