Trial by Data: Chronic Diseases & Data

Featuring: Dr. David Rubin, University of Chicago

This week, we welcome Dr. David Rubin to Trial by Data to discuss the changing field of chronic disease management, and new methods of data collection.

Dr. David Rubin is an internationally recognized gastroenterologist specializing in inflammatory bowel disease. He is a professor at the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine, and Co-Director of the university’s Digestive Diseases Center. Currently, he runs a research group focused on bettering our understanding and treatment of Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, and is currently running a clinical trial using wearables to determine the effects of activity, sleep, and diet on patients with Inflammatory Bowel Disease.

You can follow him on Twitter at @IBDMD.

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Listen and subscribe here: Trial by Data, presented by Litmus Health.

Each week, we like to pull out some of the key themes from the conversation, and provide you with the references associated with each topic. We believe that when it comes to knowledge and conversation, more is more.

Here are the key topics from this week’s episode:

The importance of optimism in patient care. When you’re taking care of people who are sick, the framework of care should include both optimism and expertise. As the field advances, it’s important to create a narrative that highlights the bright potential of the future.


Treat-to-target and its role in Crohn’s disease treatment. As new treatments are developed, we’re improving how we control chronic diseases. The industry is moving towards a new model of treating to a target, in which treatments are proactively adjusted until you achieve a target of disease control that is sustainable and improves quality of life over time.


New data streams’ ability to transform the way we treat chronic diseases. Traditional data has been static and cross-sectional, representing a single retrospective point in time. Data collected at the point of experience from Fitbits and other wearables is changing how we track patient outcomes throughout the trial. The ability to align these data with traditional sources, such as PROs and research data creates a holistic, longitudinal representation. It necessarily comes with its own challenges of privacy and accuracy of the data.


Pharma’s role in innovation. Pharma is committed to investing in novel data collection techniques, but is driven by the FDA and the endpoints they assign for effectiveness and safety. By demonstrating utility and validating these data in our own trials, we are driving the new endpoints and optimistically leading the way towards better chronic disease management and more efficient clinical trials.

Trial by Data, presented by Litmus Health, is a podcast exploring the data-driven technologies and strategies shaping the future of clinical trials. We cover the most pressing issues and questions facing researchers and clinicians today, in an ever-changing landscape. Listen in as we interview leaders and innovators in the field who are at the forefront of developing and using these data-driven approaches.