GE's $100M cancer challenge kicks its idea machine into motion

GE Healthcare says it will carve out a billion dollars from its research budget over the next 5 years to support work on new cancer detection and treatment technologies and joined with a group of venture companies to back a $100 million "open innovation" challenge to spur new scientific work. And their website has already begun to attract some interesting proposals. Their initial focus: The lethal triple negative form of breast cancer.

To get the idea machine rolling, GE has hosted a website that is posting pitches. New proposals range from projects on epigenetic treatments now in animal studies to ideas on cloud computing and new diagnostics for detecting a recurring case of cancer. When GE offered a similar proposal on clean tech, it drew more than 5,000 ideas that led to $134 million in investments for programs and partnerships. New cancer submissions will be taken through November 20.

GE is also creating a "super database" to consolidate clinical, pathology, therapy and outcomes data from its medical quality improvement consortium. GE and O'Reilly Media plan to host a series of "code-a-thons" which will be aimed at the data science field as they look for new applications for existing cancer data.

- read the GE release
- here's the AFP story