Call for Papers – Drug Safety

Call for Papers – Drug Safety

Drug Safety invites the submission of original research articles (up to 6000 words) on the Role of Artificial Intelligence/Machine Learning in Pharmacovigilance for a themed issue of the journal to be published in 2021. The issue is guest edited by Dr. Andrew Bate (GSK) and Dr. Yuan Luo (Northwestern University). With a mix of invited review articles and original research articles, the theme issue will provide a comprehensive coverage of how emerging technologies can affect work tasks and further improve the field of pharmacovigilance.

We welcome proposals for original research articles on the following topics:

  • Methods for identifying safety signals in any or combinations of data source

Author Brief: The article will showcase novel research on how pharmacovigilance can benefit from the continuously increasing number and form of data sources, especially electronic health record data and patient self-tracked/self-collected data. In addition, the article will discuss how machine learning has helped improve identifying safety signals from these data sources for pharmacovigilance.

  • Prediction, in future numbers of adverse events or types of safety outcomes, or change in severity in RCT, PSPs, RWD or other data sources e.g. prospective surveys

Author Brief: The article will showcase novel machine learning methods for predicting outcomes such as future numbers of adverse events or types of safety events, or change in severity in randomized controlled trials (RCTs), patient support programs (PSPs), real world data (RWD) or other data sources e.g. prospective surveys. Of particular interests is how the methods will account for longitudinality and missing data from the above data sources for pharmacovigilance prediction.

  •  Visual pattern recognition in safety

Author Brief: This article will describe the novel application of visual pattern recognition to support signal detection in pharmacovigilance.

  • Developing test sets for assessing machine learning algorithmic performance

Author Brief: The article will showcase efforts for developing test datasets for assessing machine learning performance in pharmacovigilance tasks such as predicting future numbers of adverse events or types of safety events. The article will need to demonstrate rigorous annotation process e.g., inter-annotator agreement evaluation and quality control. Of particular interests is the actual release of a  dataset for pharmacovigilance prediction.

  • Developing frameworks for increasing transparency or explainability of machine learning outputs (including visualization) as well as assessing how to best implement into routine use

Author Brief: The article will showcase efforts for developing novel methods to assess and ideally increase the transparency of machine learning models in predicting pharmacovigilance outcomes either at systemic cohort level or at individual patient level. Adoption and/or implementation of such efforts in real world pharmacovigilance is a plus. Integration of multiple data sources to collate on each other and improve transparency is also a plus. Of particular interests is the open-source release of such a system.

  • Methods work in building capabilities to facilitate case processing and intake

Author Brief: Both regulators and pharmaceutical companies have very complex processes with many steps to get reports into their databases. The article will focus on robotic process automation and machine learning-based approaches to make report entry more efficient and effective.

  • Approaches for assessing quality, reliability, credibility and trust in machine learning outputs

Author Brief: The article will showcase efforts for evaluating quality and reproducibility of machine learning models in predicting pharmacovigilance outcomes either at systemic cohort level or at individual patient level. Evaluation on a large multi-institute dataset is ideal. Detailed error analysis on generalizability and reproducibility is a plus. Of particular interests is the open-source release of such a system to establish some “industrial standard”.

Please submit an abstract describing your proposed paper by 30 April 2021 to nitin.joshi@springer.com. Full papers will be invited by 30 May 2021 and manuscripts due by 31 August 2020.

Drug Safety is the official journal of the International Society of Pharmacovigilance (ISoP) and is indexed in all major databases. It is published by Springer Nature under the Adis imprint.

Using state-of-the-art technology to combat challenges unique to 21st century culture

Using state-of-the-art technology to combat challenges unique to 21st century culture

Since I now have a piqued interest in the application of artificial intelligence in pharmacovigilance, I was interested to read the findings from a study using machine learning to identify ICSRs in social media.  Until now, my impression of ADRs reported in the social media was that identifying valid ICSRs was more than challenging due to their diversity, complexity, colloquialisms and anonymity. Also, it seems the regulatory authorities acknowledge these challenges as it is not yet a regulatory requirement to monitor social media as a source for ICSRs. But is this looking set to change if machine learning and automation become the norm? Continue reading “Using state-of-the-art technology to combat challenges unique to 21st century culture”

Why rise of the machines will be beneficial in the pharmacovigilance world

Why rise of the machines will be beneficial in the pharmacovigilance world

Automation, machine learning, artificial intelligence, robots – hearing such terms mentioned in the workplace can strike fear in the everyday employee, that soon the human workforce will be replaced entirely by a ‘digital workforce’. And of course many sci-fi movies only play on this hype. Whilst in certain industries or for specific job roles there may be more than an element of truth to this, in the pharmacovigilance world, using machines to supplement human input is not only a necessity but also a blessing. Or so I learnt at the International Society of Pharmacovigilance (ISOP) Seminar on Intelligent Automation in Pharmacovigilance, held in Boston in December 2017. Continue reading “Why rise of the machines will be beneficial in the pharmacovigilance world”