National Cancer Institute Plan to Study Genomic Cancer Using Cloud Computing.
By Joseph Marks (from Nextgov.)
“Computer clouds have been credited with making the workplace more efficient, giving consumers anytime-anywhere access to emails, photos, documents and music as well as helping companies crunch through masses of data to gain business intelligence.
Now it looks like the cloud might help cure cancer too.
The National Cancer Institute plans to sponsor three pilot computer clouds filled with genomic cancer information that researchers across the country will be able to access remotely and mine for information.
The program is based on a simple revelation, George Komatsoulis, interim director and chief information officer of the National Cancer Institute’s Center for Biomedical Informatics and Information Technology, told Nextgov. It turns out the gross physiological characteristics we typically use to describe cancer — a tumor’s size and its location in the body — often say less about the disease’s true character and the best course of treatment than genomic data buried deep in the cancer’s DNA.
That’s sort of like saying you’re probably more similar to your cousin than to your neighbor, even though you live in New York and your cousin lives in New Delhi. It means treatments designed for one cancer site might be useful for certain tumors at a different site, but, in most cases, we don’t know enough about those tumors’ genetic similarities yet to make that call.”
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