IBM gets personal with biomedical analytics

Big Blue has unleashed its powerful computers to aid doctors in tailoring treatments. IBM's ($IBM) Clinical Genomics analytics tool is now being tested in Italy to advise physicians on personalized treatment plans based on a bevy of electronic data. (But apparently not genomics data, as the name seems to suggest.) 

Clinical Genomics, which an IBM team in Haifa, Israel, developed, crunches data from hospital records, treatment guidelines and a patient's own records to plot a course of treatment for the patient, according to Big Blue's release. Doctors at Fondazione IRCCS Istituto Nazionale dei Tumori, a major cancer treatment center in Italy, are going to test drive the analytics platform.

"Our clinical genomics solution may enable care-givers to personalize treatment and increase its chances of success," explained Haim Nelken, senior manager of integration technologies at IBM Research-Haifa, in the release. "The solution is designed to provide physicians with recommendations that go beyond the results of clinical trials. It may allow them to go deeper into the data and more accurately follow the reasoning that led to choices previously made on the basis of subjective memory, intuition or clinical trial results."

By most accounts, the future of personalizing treatments will involve some use of genomics information. While IBM's analytics could help drill beyond the level of evidence provided in clinical trials data, companies have already begun developing technology that brings DNA data into the hands of doctors to help them understand disease and advance personalized medicine.

- here's the release
- check out the IBM-sponsored blog report