Oracle, IBM support $100M personalized medicine effort at UPMC

UPMC aims to slice and dice a variety of massive data sources to improve personalized care for patients. And the Pittsburgh-based health group has tapped Oracle ($ORCL), IBM ($IBM), Informatica and dbMotion for technology in the $100 million project, which will give clinicians, researchers, administrators and others real-time access to data and analytics, UPMC announced Oct. 1.

Oracle previously revealed UPMC's use of Oracle Health Sciences Network, which is a new web-based technology that enables healthcare providers and pharma companies to share data for clinical trials securely. The company last week listed numerous technologies--such as enterprise healthcare analytics and identity and access management tools--supporting UPMC's 5-year project.

The personalized medicine project offers a bevy of potential benefits, with plans to unite data from 200 sources at UPMC such as patient records, financial information and lab data. It strives to pinpoint effective treatments for patients, prompt clinicians to intervene to prevent illness and improve quality and cost measures. Also, the Oracle Health Sciences Network opens the door to collaborations between UPMC and pharma, with the tools to do clinical trial protocol design and patient recruitment.

Like other medical centers and research hubs, UPMC is grappling with what some would call a "big data" dilemma. The group's clinical, financial and other data sources have skyrocketed to 3.2 petabytes, growing "faster than our ability to transform that information into intelligence and improved decision-making at the point of care," Dr. Steven Shapiro, chief medical and scientific officer at UPMC, said in a statement.

Shapiro foresees the data deluge growing more severe with falling costs of DNA sequencing leading to more genomic information to manage.

- here's UPMC's release
- see Oracle's statement
- and eWeek's article

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