Mount Sinai Health System develops Imaging Research Warehouse for studying healthcare data

The Mount Sinai Health System in New York City has developed the Imaging Research Warehouse (IRW), a “massive image database” developed by the Mount Sinai Translational and Molecular Imaging Institute (TMII).

The IRW integrates clinical imaging results with electronic health records and the goal is to give researchers access to data from more than 1 million patients. All images and records will be completely stripped of patient identification. The IRW is supported with funds from the National Institute of Health’s pilot program.

Zahi Fayad, PhD, director of the TMII and a professor at Mount Sinai’s Icahn School of Medicine, said in a statement this development will allow researchers to explore patient data like never before.

“This imaging warehouse is uncharted territory for our scientists, and we are excited to give our imaginations free rein to explore imaging for the first time and think without boundaries,” Fayad said. “By having this imaging data available, we can find new patterns of disease and new ways to diagnose and develop new treatments.”

“The Imaging Research Warehouse is a unique resource that will provide large volumes of de-identified images to the research community” David Mendelson, MD, vice chair of radiology for Mount Sinai Health System and a professor at the Icahn School of Medicine, said in the same statement. “This model fills a gap in the new world of healthcare ‘big data.’ The data contained within patients’ radiological images is hard to make use of, and this warehouse is the solution to expose this information for analysis.”