April 11, 2022 | Bio-IT World today announced the 2022 Innovative Practices Awards winners. Four grand prize awards were granted to AstraZeneca, Guardant Health with IQVIA, Merck KGaA with Genedata, and Quantum Leap Healthcare Collaborative / University of California San Francisco with OpenClinica. The awards ceremony will be held during the plenary program on Tuesday, May 3, at the 2022 Bio-IT World Conference & Expo in Boston.

Since 2003, Bio-IT World has hosted an elite awards program with the goal of highlighting outstanding examples of how technology innovations and strategic initiatives can be applied to advance life sciences research. This year’s winners represent excellence in innovation in the categories of Clinical & Health-IT, IT Infrastructure, Knowledge Management, and Personalized & Translational Medicine.

“The Bio-IT World community consistently delivers innovation to drive the life sciences forward,” said Allison Proffitt, Bio-IT World Editorial Director. “This year, our panel of peer judges were particularly impressed with efforts to shift processes and data culture to empower data science and AI, with comprehensive and integrated tools for drug discovery, and with forward-thinking approaches to structuring and normalizing both clinical and real-world data.

2022 Bio-IT World Innovative Practices Awards Winners
Here are the four winning projects, as described in their own words.

The Pharmaceutical industry is seeking to accelerate Drug Discovery through a renewed focus on the valuable data it has accumulated and find ways to use these data far more effectively through the use of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning techniques that were previously impossible. Augmented Drug Design is the program driving AstraZeneca’s efforts in the Drug Design space with the aim of significantly reducing the time to develop candidate drugs. The Augmented Drug Design platform uses centralized data access guided by FAIR data principles and high-performance computational modeling coupled with AI/ML insights to provide our scientists with novel drug design capabilities. In the twenty months since program inception, these technologies have been deployed against 70% of our small molecule projects and have significantly impacted several areas including molecular ideation, library design decisions, synthetic route planning, patent research and writing and have already contributed to accelerations in the discovery pipeline.

Learn more about this project during the team’s presentation in the Software Applications and Services track on Wednesday May 4, 3:40-4:10pm

Guardant Health nominated by IQVIA
In the area of precision oncology, the more availability of high-quality clinical data that enables additional stratified insights to be gleaned, the better. This is the driving force behind an initiative by Guardant Health to use state of the art text mining and Natural Language Processing (NLP) to structure and normalize complex clinical variables from clinical documents in the real-world clinical-genomic platform – Guardant INFORM. Built on Guardant360 liquid biopsy results, Guardant INFORM combines large volumes of genomic and clinical data to help accelerate research and development of next generation cancer therapeutics. Using NLP, key information such as TNM stage, biomarker profile, tumor histology, smoking history and performance status is now extracted from the patient narrative and transformed to normalized, structured data with precision of up to 100% for certain variables (see table 1).  By coupling deep phenotypic information with liquid biopsy results, more targeted drug development, better clinical trial optimization and more powerful post market research are all enabled.

Learn more about this project during the team’s presentation in the AI for Oncology, Precision Medicine, and Health track, Thursday, May 5, 12:25-12:55pm

Merck KGaA nominated by Genedata
Precision medicine is driven by large interoperable datasets, high-performance computing, and cross-functional collaboration. This project highlights how a data-driven culture, supported by an innovative technological solution, increases data discoverability and quality, contributing to a substantial reduction in operational costs and gains in productivity and efficiency.

We demonstrate how data literacy and interoperability can improve real-time inter- and intra-organizational collaboration while maintaining a high level of data quality and governance. We also show how breaking down organizational silos in an international biopharmaceutical company accelerates the development of precision medicines.

The solution described below is off-the-shelf and can be easily adopted, customized, and deployed in any biopharmaceutical organization aiming to drive data-driven innovation. By combining end-to-end automation of complex R&D workflows, high-performance analytics, and full data governance, the solution allows companies to maximize the ROI of their R&D data while facilitating the development of safe and effective next-generation precision therapies.

Learn more about this project during the team’s presentation in the Data Science & Analytics Technologies track on Thursday, May 5, 10:25-10:55am.

Quantum Leap Healthcare Collaborative / University of California San Francisco nominated by OpenClinica
A major expense in clinical trials is the collection and abstraction of clinical data. This expense is further compounded by human errors that require additional investments in data cleaning/validation. Enhancements in the efficiency and accuracy of data capture are important advances in controlling the rising costs of clinical trials.

We have established a flexible framework for integration and completion of Electronic Case Report Forms (eCRFs) through automated, direct capture from Electronic Health Record (EHR) systems. OneSource, launched within a participant’s EHR patient chart, automatically populates structured eCRFs by extracting data directly from the EHR, without need of manual abstraction.

Deployed at 8 clinical sites in the multicenter, adaptive phase 2 I-SPY-COVID-19 platform trial, we demonstrate a time savings of 61% over sites using manual data abstraction. Furthermore, at sites using OneSource, data errors were eliminated, leading to additional downstream cost savings in cleaning/validation costs. OneSource has the additional benefits of low implementation costs and reusability across sites.

Learn more about this project during the team’s presentation in the Digitization of Clinical Development and Clinical Trials track on Thursday, May 5, 12:25-12:55pm.



OpenClinica is transforming healthcare through innovative cloud technology that simplifies running clinical trials. Proven in over 10,000 studies worldwide, the OpenClinica platform is trusted by leading biopharmaceutical companies, contract research organizations, academic institutions, and government agencies. OpenClinica is used across a wide spectrum of clinical research, including drug, device, and diagnostic trials, global health studies involving 200,000 patients, adaptive platform trials, and clinical trials for some of the first gene therapies to be approved for market. Hundreds of small, midsize, and large research organizations leverage OpenClinica to capture better clinical data faster and to do so in a way that meets the highest standards for security and regulatory compliance (21 CFR Part 11, Annex 11, GDPR, HIPAA).

OpenClinica, LLC is headquartered in Waltham, MA. For more information on OpenClinica’s solutions for electronic data capture (EDC), eSource, ePRO, randomization, and analytics and reporting – visit www.openclinica.com.


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