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Exp Mol Med. 2018 Mar 2;50(3):e453. doi: 10.1038/emm.2017.290.

Whither systems medicine?

Author information

1
European Molecular Biology Laboratory, European Bioinformatics Institute (EMBL-EBI), Wellcome Genome Campus, Hinxton, Cambridge, UK.
2
Institute of Medical Statistics, University Medical Center Göttingen, Göttingen, Germany.
3
Fachbereich Informatik und Informationswissenschaft, Universität Konstanz, Konstanz, Germany.
4
Institute of Pathology, Charité Universitätsmedizin, Berlin, Germany.
5
Integrative Research Institute for the Life Sciences, Institute for Theoretical Biology, Humboldt Universität, Berlin, Germany.
6
Biologische Heilmittel Heel GmbH, Baden-Baden, Germany.
7
Department of Public Health and Community Medicine, Tufts University School of Medicine, Boston, MA, USA.
8
Perinatal Epidemiology Unit, Hannover Medical School, Hannover, Germany.
9
Center for Information Services and High Performance Computing, Technische Universität Dresden, Dresden, Germany.
10
Institute for Pathology, Neuropathology, Hannover Medical School, Hannover, Germany.
11
Institute for Neuropathology, University Clinic of Freiburg, Freiburg, Germany.
12
Institute of Clinical Molecular Biology, Christian-Albrechts-University of Kiel, Kiel, Germany.
13
Institute of Computational Biology, Helmholtz Zentrum München, Neuherberg, Germany.
14
Center for Mathematics, Technische Universität München, Garching, Germany.
15
Transcriptome Bioinformatics, LIFE Research Center for Civilization Diseases, University of Leipzig, Leipzig, Germany.
16
Division of Theoretical Systems Biology, German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), Heidelberg, Germany.
17
BioQuant Center, University of Heidelberg, Heidelberg, Germany.
18
Maastricht Center for Systems Biology, University of Maastricht, Maastricht, The Netherlands.
19
Institute of Bioinformatics, University Medicine Greifswald, Greifswald, Germany.
20
Division of Systems Biology of Signal Transduction, German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), Heidelberg, Germany.
21
Translational Lung Research Center (TLRC), Member of the German Center for Lung Research (DZL), Heidelberg, Germany.
22
Molecular Bioinformatics, Institute of Computer Science, Johann Wolfgang Goethe-University Frankfurt am Main, Frankfurt am Main, Germany.
23
Center for Bioinformatics, University of Tübingen, Tübingen, Germany.
24
Quantitative Biology Center, University of Tübingen, Tübingen, Germany.
25
Biomolecular Interactions, Max Planck Institute for Developmental Biology, Tübingen, Germany.
26
Computational Systems Biology, Bayer Technology Services GmbH, Leverkusen, Germany.
27
Department of Medicine II, Saarland University Medical Center, Saarland University, Homburg, Germany.
28
Biomax Informatics AG, Planegg (Munich), Germany.
29
Department of Computational Biology and Applied Algorithmics, Max-Planck-Institut für Informatik, Saarbrücken, Germany.
30
Institute for Systems Theory and Automatic Control, University of Stuttgart, Stuttgart, Germany.
31
Stuttgart Research Center Systems Biology, University of Stuttgart, Stuttgart, Germany.
32
Department of Physiology & Medical Physics, Centre for Systems Medicine, Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, Dublin 2, Ireland.
33
Institute of Cell Biology and Immunology, University of Stuttgart, Stuttgart, Germany.
34
Institute for Medical Informatics and Biometry, Carl Gustav Carus Faculty of Medicine,Technische Universität Dresden, Dresden, Germany.
35
Joint Research Centre for Computational Biomedicine (JRC-COMBINE), RWTH-Aachen University Hospital, Aachen, Germany.
36
Department of Medical Informatics, University Medical Center, Göttingen, Germany.
37
Institute for Lung Research/iLung, Universities of Giessen and Marburg Lung Center, Philipps University Marburg, Marburg, Germany, Member of the German Center for Lung Research, Marburg, Germany.
38
Joint Research Center for Computational Biomedicine, AICES, RWTH Aachen University, Aachen, Germany.
39
Department of Mathematics, Technische Universität München, Munich, Germany.
40
Laboratory of Systems Tumor Immunology, Friedrich-Alexander University Erlangen-Nürnberg and Erlangen University Hospital, Erlangen, Germany.
41
Department of Systems Biology and Bioinformatics, Rostock University, Rostock, Germany.
42
Stellenbosch Institute for Advanced Study (STIAS), Wallenberg Research Centre at Stellenbosch University, Stellenbosch, South Africa.

Abstract

New technologies to generate, store and retrieve medical and research data are inducing a rapid change in clinical and translational research and health care. Systems medicine is the interdisciplinary approach wherein physicians and clinical investigators team up with experts from biology, biostatistics, informatics, mathematics and computational modeling to develop methods to use new and stored data to the benefit of the patient. We here provide a critical assessment of the opportunities and challenges arising out of systems approaches in medicine and from this provide a definition of what systems medicine entails. Based on our analysis of current developments in medicine and healthcare and associated research needs, we emphasize the role of systems medicine as a multilevel and multidisciplinary methodological framework for informed data acquisition and interdisciplinary data analysis to extract previously inaccessible knowledge for the benefit of patients.

PMID:
29497170
PMCID:
PMC5898894
DOI:
10.1038/emm.2017.290
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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