Sep 06, 2018

Cross-Industry Collaboration of GNS Healthcare, Amgen and Alliance for Clinical Trials in Oncology to Leverage AI to Advance Understanding of Treatment Response in Metastatic Colorectal Cancer

Collaboration to apply causal artificial intelligence and clinical trial data to identify factors that drive treatment response in patients with metastatic colorectal cancer

CAMBRIDGE, Mass.– September 6, 2018 – GNS Healthcare (GNS), a leading precision medicine company, announced a cross-industry partnership with Amgen and the Alliance for Clinical Trials in Oncology (Alliance) that will apply causal artificial intelligence (AI) and simulation to combined clinical trial data to identify factors that drive treatment response in patients with metastatic colorectal cancer (CRC).

The goal of the collaboration is to better understand the factors that drive and predict a patient’s response to Amgen’s metastatic CRC treatment, panitumumab.

“Advances in artificial intelligence, and specifically in causal machine learning and simulation technology, are giving us the opportunity to decipher and illuminate the biological networks driving disease like never before,” said Colin Hill, Chairman, CEO, and Co-Founder of GNS Healthcare. “The resulting insights have the ability to change the way that physicians and their patients make care decisions and deliver personalized medicine to individuals based on their distinct biology versus the one size fits all approach of standard medicine.”

GNS will leverage its powerful causal AI platform, Reverse Engineering & Forward Simulation (REFSTM), to create causal models from the CALGB 80405 (Alliance) phase III clinical trial data in combination with Amgen’s PEAK trial data, and it will contain demographic information as well as treatment and clinical history. Learning directly from the data, REFS will identify patient subpopulations related to treatment response, explore how gender affects disease progression, and build upon previous GNS-Alliance studies by examining the role of right- versus left-sidedness of CRC plays in disease prognosis and survival outcomes.

“We are excited to be part of this innovative collaboration, which will help provide additional perspective on treatment response in patients with metastatic disease,” said Greg Friberg, Vice President of Oncology Global Development at Amgen. “Further research through new technologies, like this innovative causal AI platform, has the potential to transform how we discover and develop drugs.”

“With GNS’s AI and important clinical trial data provided by Amgen, we are poised to combine biology and technology to better understand how metastatic colorectal cancer progresses, the variations in treatment response, and move closer to individualizing the management of metastatic colorectal cancer,” said Alan Venook, MD, Study Chair for the CALGB 80405 (Alliance) study, Madden Family Distinguished Professor of Medical Oncology and Translational Research at the University of California-San Francisco, and Shorenstein Associate Director for Program Development at the Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center.

CRC is the third most common cancer in the U.S., with an estimated 140,000 new cases diagnosed each year. There is still much to learn about the factors that drive progression and for patients with metastatic CRC the optimal treatment is still unknown.

About REFS
REFS™ (Reverse Engineering & Forward Simulation) is GNS Healthcare’s patented causal learning and simulation platform. Unlike traditional artificial intelligence platforms, REFS analyzes data sets beyond correlation, instead inferring causal mechanisms between variables to answer questions such as: How will the patient respond to this treatment? What if we choose one intervention over another? REFS is the only commercially available platform that infers causal mechanisms from patient data at scale from traditional healthcare and emerging data sources to bring the promise of precision medicine within reach.

About GNS Healthcare
GNS Healthcare solves healthcare’s matching problem for leading health plans, biopharma companies, and health systems. We transform massive and diverse data streams to precisely match therapeutics, procedures, and care management interventions to individuals, improving health outcomes and saving billions of dollars. Our causal learning and simulation platform, REFS, accelerates the discovery of what works for whom and why.

Media Contact:
Patty Kellicker
VP, Marketing

About the Alliance for Clinical Trials in Oncology
The Alliance for Clinical Trials in Oncology develops and conducts clinical trials with promising new cancer therapies, utilizes the best science to develop optimal treatment and prevention strategies for cancer, and researches methods to alleviate side effects of cancer and cancer treatments. The National Cancer Institute (NCI) has awarded the Alliance grants as a member of the NCI National Clinical Trials Network (NCTN) and a research base for the NCI Community Oncology Research Program (NCORP). The Alliance comprises nearly 10,000 cancer specialists at hospitals, medical centers, and community clinics across the United States and Canada. To learn more about the Alliance, visit

Media Contact:
Jamilah Owens
Communications Manager