Expressing and Executing Informed Consent Permissions Using SWRL: The All of Us Use Case

Muhammad Amith, Marcelline R. Harris, Cooper Stansbury, Kathleen Ford, Frank J. Manion, Cui Tao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


The informed consent process is a complicated procedure involving permissions as well a variety of entities and actions. In this paper, we discuss the use of Semantic Web Rule Language (SWRL) to further extend the Informed Consent Ontology (ICO) to allow for semantic machine-based reasoning to manage and generate important permission-based information that can later be viewed by stakeholders. We present four use cases of permissions from the All of Us informed consent document and translate these permissions into SWRL expressions to extend and operationalize ICO. Our efforts show how SWRL is able to infer some of the implicit information based on the defined rules, and demonstrate the utility of ICO through the use of SWRL extensions. Future work will include developing formal and generalized rules and expressing permissions from the entire document, as well as working towards integrating ICO into software systems to enhance the semantic representation of informed consent for biomedical research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)197-206
Number of pages10
JournalAMIA ... Annual Symposium proceedings / AMIA Symposium. AMIA Symposium
StatePublished - 2021
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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