Online Program

Transitioning from a proprietary electronic data capture (EDC) system to an open-source (OS) platform

Wednesday, November 6, 2013 : 1:10 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.

Charles Tirrell, Prometheus Research, LLC, New Haven, CT
David Voccola, Prometheus Research, LLC, New Haven, CT
Oleksiy Golovko, Prometheus Research, LLC, New Haven, CT
Clark Evans, Prometheus Research, LLC, New Haven, CT
Owen McGettrick, Prometheus Research, LLC, New Haven, CT
Naralys Sinanis, Prometheus Research, LLC, New Haven, CT
Leon Rozenblit, Prometheus Research, LLC, New Haven, CT
Background: Current EDC systems boast secure and user-friendly online survey management and data monitoring. However, these systems often fail to meet the difficult integration requirements of multidisciplinary and collaborative research projects. To meet these requirements for an autism research project, we migrated and re-packaged our own proprietary EDC system into an open-source, web-based integrated EDC system called RexAcquire. Methods: We (1) defined the data collection needs of a large-scale autism research project; (2) developed a new code base; (3) obtained an open-source license; (4) made the code freely available through BitBucket; (5) converted the pre-existing configuration, user and assessment data into the new OS-compatible format; and (6) evaluated the platform. Results: Users reported a need for a self-administered EDC, where patients could directly submit answers to common research forms. Interactive user configurability, reusability of study instruments, sophisticated form configuration, and the ability to query across multiple studies and data types were among the top requested features for RexAcquire. The data conversion proved to be challenging, requiring significant migration plans. The software is freely available for download, use, and modification as part of the OS RexDB package at Conclusions: The results of transitioning from a non-integrated EDC system to the OS RexAcquire and RexDB platforms for a large-scale autism research study were successful. RexAcquire supported secure interactive user configurability, the efficient reuse of research instruments from multiple studies and data types, and the migration of data into an iDMS (RexDB). Future support for multiple languages and offline access should be considered for international research projects.

Learning Areas:

Communication and informatics
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
Discuss the limitations of existing EDC systems. Describe the purpose of RexAcquire including its integration with the Research Exchange Database (RexDB®). Outline the transition to an OS platform for autism research. List the benefits of a web-accessible EDC system that automatically pushes research data into an Integrated Data Management System (iDMS).

Keyword(s): Data Collection, New Technology

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the Director of Platform Architecture and have several years of experience in analysis, scientific research, software development, data modeling and project management.
Any relevant financial relationships? Yes

Name of Organization Clinical/Research Area Type of relationship
Prometheus Research, LLC Informatics Employment (includes retainer)

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.