Heterogeneity in COVID-19 Patients at Multiple Levels of Granularity: From Biclusters to Clinical Interventions

Suresh K. Bhavnani, Erich Kummerfeld, Weibin Zhang, Yong Fang Kuo, Nisha Garg, Shyam Visweswaran, Mukaila Raji, Ravi Radhakrishnan, Georgiy Golvoko, Sandra Hatch, Michael Usher, Genevieve Melton-Meaux, Christopher Tignanelli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Several studies have shown that COVID-19 patients with prior comorbidities have a higher risk for adverse outcomes, resulting in a disproportionate impact on older adults and minorities that fit that profile. However, although there is considerable heterogeneity in the comorbidity profiles of these populations, not much is known about how prior comorbidities co-occur to form COVID-19 patient subgroups, and their implications for targeted care. Here we used bipartite networks to quantitatively and visually analyze heterogeneity in the comorbidity profiles of COVID-19 inpatients, based on electronic health records from 12 hospitals and 60 clinics in the greater Minneapolis region. This approach enabled the analysis and interpretation of heterogeneity at three levels of granularity (cohort, subgroup, and patient), each of which enabled clinicians to rapidly translate the results into the design of clinical interventions. We discuss future extensions of the multigranular heterogeneity framework, and conclude by exploring how the framework could be used to analyze other biomedical phenomena including symptom clusters and molecular phenotypes, with the goal of accelerating translation to targeted clinical care.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)112-121
Number of pages10
JournalAMIA ... Annual Symposium proceedings / AMIA Symposium. AMIA Symposium
StatePublished - 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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