The collaboration that became Sage Analytica began in 2003 at NIH National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), where Lone was an epidemiologist and Rob an analytical consultant. Their first joint project was to help write a research agenda to understand SARS. While still at NIAID, the two went on to many more papers about influenza epidemiology, methodological challenges, vaccine adverse events, molecular epidemiology, pandemic influenza, and more.
"We found we worked very well together--we had a synergy that allowed us to easily bridge science and communication," Lone recalls. "It was tremendously fun to work together, because our talents were perfectly complementary," adds Rob. "We found that between us we could go from the most intricate science to getting the big picture across to policy makers and the public-all without missing a beat."
They formed Sage Analytica when Lone left the government July 2007. They have been joined by new Sages with yet more complementary skills. The company has taken on all sorts of projects--from assessing the global burden of the 2009 influenza pandemic to teaching a computer to extract data from doctorsí discharge notes. And they're still having fun.