Major forces in the worlds of genomics research and Big Data have united to transform the analysis of elephantine amounts of biological and health data. And the collaborators--Mount Sinai Medical Center and the software company Cloudera--have enlisted their top minds to master the challenging tasks ahead.
Led by its chief scientist and co-founder, Jeff Hammerbacher, Palo Alto, CA-based Cloudera plans to hone its technology and expertise in Hadoop software and other Big Data applications to solve riddles about disease complexities and potential remedies, the company revealed July 3. Eric Schadt, a leader in computational biology and director at Mount Sinai's Institute for Genomics and Multiscale Biology, headlines the team of clinical and research specialists from the standout medical center.
Big names and institutions aside, the partners have joined forces amid fervor over the application of genomics in medicine, particularly in combating ailments such as cancer where misfit genes drive disease. Yet the premise of the tie-up, to develop solutions to analyze massive amounts of health-related data, proves that researchers and clinicians lack tools to understand and apply the vast data sets from gene-expression and DNA sequencing experiments to discover and deliver treatments.
"We can improve healthcare delivery and treatment through new technology and acquired knowledge," Schadt, who joined Mount Sinai last year, said in a statement. "I am delighted that Jeff will be collaborating with the Institute of Genomics and Multiscale Biology and look forward to working together to dramatically change how we think about medical analysis and reporting."
For Cloudera, a standout player in Hadoop technology, this collaboration appears to be more than a token gesture in the genomics field. As ZDNet reports, Hammerbacher plans to spend a quarter of his time on the company's project with Mount Sinai. Clearly, the company sees the major opportunity for using its technology in biomedicine.
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