Our ability to innovatively interweave mathematics, engineering and, computer and data science in medicine portends enormous potential change for our collective future health. A specific area of application lies in the use of machine learning for pattern recognition in pathology and endoscopy based gastrointestinal disease diagnoses. Enormous explosion of ‘omic and digitized data has enabled us to develop robust models exploring gut structure and function. There still remains a gap in childhood digestive diseases for such technological advancements where across diseases there is an increasing appreciation of the early incidence and onset of digestive diseases.
I am a Translational Clinical Scientist with a background in pediatrics, gastroenterology, global health/ epidemiology, and data science. I also hold an adjunct faculty appointment at the Aga Khan University, in Karachi, Pakistan. My overarching research interest is to use machine learning to study big data in gastroenterology. In this context, I study gut structure and function in children with various inflammatory enteropathies such celiac disease, inflammatory bowel disease here in the US ,and environmental enteropathy (global health) to drive innovations in possible treatment and management modalities.
My lab’s work over the last several years has centered around the use of Machine Learning/ Artificial Intelligence methods to study patterns of disease in small bowel biopsies. We initially received seed funding from two UVA specific mechanisms (Engineering in Medicine, iThrive scholar) and recent career development funding from the NIH – NIDDK (K23 DK117061). I co-direct the Gut Intelligence Lab which is a multi-disciplinary team of medical professionals, data scientists and engineers geared towards exploring and solving questions related to gut structure and function. Our overall aim is to challenge and seek to shift clinical practice paradigms by utilizing novel Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning based methods to innovatively contribute to the field of medicine – particularly pediatric gastroenterology.
Our global health work has involved studying and quantifying tissue patterns of inflammation using archival biopsies from children with environmental enteropathy and those with celiac disease from low-middle countries. The goal is to understand disease phenotypes and geo-spatial differences via assessment of cellular disease patterns and their association with clinical metadata including transcriptomics.
Saeed SA, Ahmed S, ….. Syed S, ….Sheikh, S. A new function of human haptoglobin: Endogenous inhibition of prostaglandin biosynthesis and its relation to haemoglobin binding. J Med Sci 2003;3(5-6):344-57.
Brown D.E, Arzumanov A, Syed S, Gait M.J, Lever A.M.L. Inhibition of HIV-1 replication by oligonucleotide analogues directed to the packaging signal and transactivating response region. Antiviral Chemistry & Chemotherapy 17:1-9; 2006.
Doctor P, Sultan A, Syed S, Christen W, Bhat P, Foster CS. Infliximab for the treatment of refractory scleritis. British Journal of Ophthalmology 94:579-583; 2010.
Zaidi AK, Ganatra HA, Syed S, Cousens S, Lee AC, Black R, Bhutta ZA, Lawn JE. Effect of case management on neonatal mortality due to sepsis and pneumonia. BMC Public Health 11 Suppl 3:S13; 2011.
Vos T, Flaxman AD, Naghavi M, Lozano R, Michaud C, Ezzati M……. Syed S,…….Murray CJ. Years lived with disability (YLDs) for 1160 sequelae of 289 diseases and injuries 1990-2010: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2010. Lancet 380: 2163-2196; 2012.
Murray CJ, Vos T, Lozano R, Naghavi M, Flaxman AD, Michaud C…….Syed S,…….Lopez AD. Disability adjusted life years (DALYs) for 291 diseases and injuries in 21 regions, 1990—2010: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2010. Lancet 380: 2197-2223; 2012.
Seale AC, Blencowe H, Zaidi A, Ganatra H, Syed S, Engmann C, et al. Neonatal severe bacterial infection impairment estimates in South Asia, sub-Saharan Africa, and Latin America for 2010. Pediatric Research 74 Suppl 1:73-85; 2013.
Seale AC, Blencowe H, Manu AA, Nair H, Bahl R, Qazi SA, Zaidi AK, Berkley JA, Cousens SN, Lawn JE, pSBI Investigator Group. Estimates of possible severe bacterial infection in neonates in sub-Saharan Africa, south Asia, and Latin America for 2012: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Lancet Infect Dis, 2014 Aug;14(8):731-41
Syed S. Iodine and the “near” eradication of cretinism. Pediatrics. 2015 Apr;135(4):594-6.
Syed S, Tran DQ, Kemper AR, Geme JW 3rd, Lantos JD. Authorship Concerns and Who Truly Owns a Research Idea? Pediatrics. 2015 Nov;136(5):969-73
Simek RZ, Prince J, Syed S, Sauer CG, Martineau B, Hofmekler T, Freeman AJ, Kumar A, McElhanon BO, Schoen BT, Tenjarla G, McCracken C, Ziegler TR, Tangpricha V, Kugathasan S. Pilot Study Evaluating Efficacy of 2 Regimens for Hypovitaminosis D Repletion in Pediatric Inflammatory Bowel Disease. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 2016 Feb;62(2):252-8.
Manyapu M, Warraich GJ, Kugathasan S, Syed S. 2-Year-Old with a Limp and Suspected Non-Accidental Injury. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 2016 Feb 9.
Romano C, Syed S, Valenti S, Kugathasan S. Management of Acute Severe Colitis in Children With Ulcerative Colitis in the Biologics Era. Pediatrics. 2016 May;137(5)
Syed S, Addo OY, De la Cruz-Góngora V, Ashour FA, Ziegler TR, Suchdev PS. Determinants of Anemia among School-Aged Children in Mexico, the United States and Colombia. Nutrients. 2016 Jun 23;8(7).
Syed S, Ali A, Duggan C. Environmental Enteric Dysfunction in Children. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 2016 Jul;63(1):6-14.
Syed S, Kugathasan, Kumar A, Prince J, Schoen BT, McCracken C, Ziegler TR, Suchdev PSS. Use of Reticulocyte Hemoglobin Content in the Assessment of Iron Deficiency in Children with Inflammatory Bowel Disease. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 2016 Jul 16. [Epub ahead of print]
Syed S, Duggan CP. Risk Factors for Malnutrition and Environmental Enteric Dysfunction – You Really Are What You Eat. J Pediatr. 2016 Nov;178:7-8.
Syed S, Smith EM, Tangpricha V, Chesdachai S, Kumar A, Prince J, Ziegler TR, Suchdev PS, Kugathasan S. Vitamin D status is Associated with Hepcidin and Hemoglobin concentrations in Children with Inflammatory Bowel Disease. Inflamm Bowel Dis. 2017 Jul 11.
Syed S, Moore SR. EBioMedicine. Tissue is the Issue: Duodenal Biopsies to Elucidate Gut Structure and Function Among Undernourished Children in Low-Resource Settings. EBioMedicine. 2017 Sep;23:10-11.
Syed S*, Dinallo V*, Iqbal NT, Di Iorio L, Di Fusco D, Guleria S, Amadi BC, Sadiq K, Moskaluk CA, Ali A, Kelly P, Monteleone G. High SMAD7 and p-SMAD2,3 expression is associated with environmental enteropathy in children. PLoS Negl Trop Dis. 2018 Feb 7;12(2):e0006224. *equal contributions
Iqbal N, Sadiq K, Syed S, Akhund T, Umrani F, Ahmed S, Yakoob M, Rahman N, Qureshi S, Xin W, Ma J, Hughes M, Ali S. Promising Biomarkers of Environmental Enteric Dysfunction: A Prospective Cohort study in Pakistani Children. Sci Rep. 2018 Feb 14;8(1):2966.
Syed S, Iqbal NT, Ma J, Akhund T, Xin W, Moore SR, Liu E, Qureshi S, Gewirtz A, Duggan CP, Ali SA. Serum Anti-Flagellin and Anti-Lipopolysaccharide Immunoglobulins as Predictors of Linear Growth Faltering in Pakistani Infants at Risk for Environmental Enteric Dysfunction. PLoS One. 2018 Mar 6;13(3):e0193768.