Patient Similarity Networks for Precision Medicine.
J Mol Biol. 2018 May 31;:
Authors: Pai S, Bader GD
Clinical research and practice in the 21st century is poised to be transformed by analysis of computable electronic medical records and population-level genome-scale patient profiles. Genomic data captures genetic and environmental state, providing information about heterogeneity in disease and treatment outcome, but genomic-based clinical risk scores are limited. Achieving the goal of routine precision medicine that takes advantage of this rich genomics data will require computational methods that support heterogeneous data, have excellent predictive performance, and ideally, provide biologically-interpretable results. Traditional machine-learning approaches excel at performance, but often have limited interpretability. Patient similarity networks are an emerging paradigm for precision medicine, in which patients are clustered or classified based on their similarities in various features, including genomic profiles. This strategy is analogous to standard medical diagnosis, has excellent performance, is interpretable, and can preserve patient privacy. We review new methods based on patient similarity networks, including Similarity Network Fusion for patient clustering and netDx for patient classification. While these methods are already useful, much work is required to improve their scalability for contemporary genetic cohorts, optimize parameters, and incorporate a wide range of genomics and clinical data. The coming five years will provide an opportunity to assess the utility of network-based algorithms for precision medicine.
PMID: 29860027 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]