Cambridge, MA-based software company GenoSpace has teamed up with a growing number of pharma, academic and tech groups to support tranSMART, a platform for improving the use of mass quantities of translational research data.
Though not the most sexy IT story, the growth of the tranSMART data-sharing and analytics platform has major implications for how pharma and academic researchers exchange and integrate Big Data from genomics and clinical studies. If widely adopted, it could provide a unique set of technologies and standards for enabling researchers to make various types of information from multiple sources sing as one. This could streamline development of personalized treatments for serious illnesses such as cancer and a slew of chronic diseases.
Yet it's going to be a challenge to get a bunch of industry rivals and academics to agree on how tranSMART should evolve, stakeholders have told FierceBiotechIT, which covered the topic in more depth in April. Earlier this year, the University of Michigan and the Pistoia Alliance incorporated the nonprofit tranSMART Foundation to advance the platform and support the community of users, helping to make sure tranSMART lives up to its potential. GenoSpace and other software providers could play an important role in spreading the use of tranSMART through their products.
"We have seen tranSMART emerge as a standard for data collection and exchange," GenoSpace CEO John Quackenbush stated. "By adapting our software tools to support tranSMART, we allow users of our system to tap into unprecedented quantities of high-quality data using tools that address a range of basic, clinical, and translational research questions and support personalized medicine applications."
Informatics experts from Johnson & Johnson ($JNJ) and the database provider Recombinant, which is now a unit of Deloitte, were early architects and builders of tranSMART. Now the platform has moved into the open-source domain, and large drugmakers such as Sanofi ($SNY), Pfizer ($PFE) and Roche ($RHHBY) are at various stages of using the platform in their research.
- here's the release