Dr. Jeffrey Hodgin awarded U-M Precision Health Investigator Grant

By Elizabeth Walker | November 6 2018

Precision Health at the University of Michigan has chosen Dr. Jeffrey Hodgin as one of ten recipients of its Investigators Awards. The grants, totaling nearly $3 million, are of up to $300,000 each over two years. They will support research in a spectrum of precision health fields, including wearable technology, machine learning, predictive modeling, genetic analysis, imaging, and social science. Awardees were chosen from among an initial pool of more than 100 applicants with significant research projects.

Hodgin’s collaborative team of pathologists, nephrologists, rheumatologists, biostatisticians, and information technology experts (including Drs. Ulysses Balis and Jerome Cheng) have worked in recent years to apply novel and integrative approaches to the understanding of glomerular disease by utilizing clinical, molecular, and structural (histopathology) data. During the last decade, the rapid evolution of digital image technology has begun to challenge the established light microscopy-based protocols.

Lupus nephritis (LN), and inflammatory glomerular disease is a major source of morbidity and mortality for patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). However, the prognostic significance of conventional histopathologic classification of LN is controversial, which has led to calls for efforts to improve accuracy and reproducibility. Hodgin proposes to apply novel quantitative morphologic descriptor-based scoring system, novel computer-aided digital pathology image analysis approaches, and machine learning/deep learning techniques to improve prognostic utility of the kidney biopsy in LN. Because the approach is quantitative and integrates pathology and clinical data for outcome prediction, he believes it will prove superior to the conventional, semi-quantitative pathology analysis.

Learn more about U-M Precision Health Investigator Grants at the Precision Health website.