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Gilles Clermont Awarded R21 to Investigate the Role of Low Platelet Counts in Critical Illness

Wed, 08/17/2016

Gilles Clermont, MD, Professor of Critical Care Medicine, Mathematics, Industrial Engineering, Chemical Engineering, and Clinical and Translational Sciences, recently received an R21 research grant from the National Institutes of Health for a project entitled, “Endotypes of Thrombocytopenia in the Critically Ill.” Funded by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, this study will explore the connection between low platelet counts and the development of disease in critically ill patients. Robert Parker, PhD, Professor in the Department of Chemical and Petroleum Engineering at the Swanson School of Engineering, was a co-awardee.

The role of platelets is crucial in coagulation and the inflammatory response, and thrombocytopenia, or a deficiency of platelets, is a condition often seen in the critically ill. This study will investigate the dynamics of thrombocytopenia in an attempt to determine how it affects the development and outcomes of disease.

The project employs a computational approach, in which the investigators will employ large electronic health record databases in order to construct clinical endotypes of thrombocytopenia and uncover how the evolution of platelet counts corresponds to mechanisms of disease. Ultimately, the research conducted by Clermont and Parker could lead to more focused therapeutic approaches for treating the critically ill. The study will begin in July 2016 and run until 2018.