Pfizer continues to dive deeper into real-world data. In December the drugmaker and clinical data outfit Humedica jointly announced their intent to collaborate on studies examining the effectiveness of treatments.

The research will focus on the US for now, says a source, and will draw on Humedica’s NorthStar data repository. NorthStar aggregates EHR data directly from providers, capturing medications, lab results and physician notes via natural-language processing, among other data points. (All information is de-identified, says Humedica.) The aim is to let pharma see how physicians are adopting brands.

Humedica will apply “Big Data solutions across the continuum of care,” said Michael Weintraub, Humedica’s president and CEO, in the statement.

“The collaboration with Humedica will provide us with powerful information about healthcare delivery and patient outcomes,” added Geno Germano, president and general manager, Pfizer Specialty Care Business Unit.

The deal follows Pfizer’s 2011 pact with Humana, also involving real-world data and comparative-effectiveness research, and underscores a desire among life science firms to harness Big Data to enhance outcomes.

Pacts to build up real-world data stores have been struck by AstraZeneca, which signed up with IMS Health and Wellpoint; Merck, who’s working with online research platform PatientsLikeMe; and Sanofi, which teamed with Medco.