Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Data processing joins fight to treat cancer

07.04.2005


Laboratory technicians battling cancer want to improve diagnosis and treatment of the disease. But they are drowning in data from modern biological techniques. New Web-based software – validated in three European oncology hospitals – can extract potentially life-saving knowledge from such data in minutes.



In Europe, cancer is the second cause of death; worldwide it accounts for 23.5 per cent of all deaths. The race to beat this disease increasingly depends on groundbreaking bioinformatics research. Welcome as they are, the various techniques being developed in this field create massive amounts of data.

“Bioinformatics faces several challenges,” says Philippe Boutruche, coordinator of the IST project HKIS. “Life scientists need to access data from many different sources and in a variety of formats.” He adds that they lack standards to cross all this data, which cover everything from human DNA to genomes, and may spend weeks doing this manually.


An integrated software platform

Under HKIS, the five partners developed an integrated software platform for biological and biomedical data processing in cancerology. “It was built around Amadea, software used by banks and marketers for processing, crossing and transforming data. We saw its potential for handling the huge volumes of patient data generated from cancer-research techniques.”

The basic interactive platform is just 20 MB in size. Aimed at medical and biological professionals, it can connect to all data types saved in any form or structure. It can integrate and analyse new data sources from public and private databases much faster than more labour-intensive solutions.

The platform needs no programming, can be accessed on the Internet and may be used by people with different expertise levels. Thanks to a cache memory management system and special algorithms, it provides graphical output for each analysis stage in real time, even if data is stored on another server.

“We want to provide doctors, bioinformaticians and clinicians with a common environment to build data-driven experiments,” says Boutruche. “The project’s platform is homogeneous, so there is no need to export or configure data from one format to another. Being integrated, it allows a continuous workflow with raw data saved in XML format. Users can run statistical mining or algorithms, which may show why the genes of some patients are more susceptible to cancer.”

Trials prove successful

Successful trials were conducted in 2003 in specialist cancer hospitals in the Ulm Medicine University, the Curie Institute and the European Oncology Institute. Two of them used real medical data from their own databases, while the third focused on data mining. “Our platform helped to define some predictive diagnostic genes for identifying genes of interest in bladder and pancreas cancer,” notes the coordinator.

He believes the project’s technology could benefit a variety of other medical and biology domains. Among them are genetic diseases, therapeutic targets and drug discovery, genotyping and biotechnologies in general. Others include the management of genetic databases, where the software could enable quality assessment and automation.

By mid-2005, the partners will have a commercial product for biology labs, adding a specialised bio-pack to the original software. This pack will integrate the project’s major results, including the ability to access data from different databases and to upgrade the platform.

Tara Morris | alfa
Further information:
http://istresults.cordis.lu/

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Penn vet research identifies new target for taming Ebola
12.01.2017 | University of Pennsylvania

nachricht The strange double life of Dab2
10.01.2017 | University of Miami Miller School of Medicine

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

Im Focus: How to inflate a hardened concrete shell with a weight of 80 t

At TU Wien, an alternative for resource intensive formwork for the construction of concrete domes was developed. It is now used in a test dome for the Austrian Federal Railways Infrastructure (ÖBB Infrastruktur).

Concrete shells are efficient structures, but not very resource efficient. The formwork for the construction of concrete domes alone requires a high amount of...

Im Focus: Bacterial Pac Man molecule snaps at sugar

Many pathogens use certain sugar compounds from their host to help conceal themselves against the immune system. Scientists at the University of Bonn have now, in cooperation with researchers at the University of York in the United Kingdom, analyzed the dynamics of a bacterial molecule that is involved in this process. They demonstrate that the protein grabs onto the sugar molecule with a Pac Man-like chewing motion and holds it until it can be used. Their results could help design therapeutics that could make the protein poorer at grabbing and holding and hence compromise the pathogen in the host. The study has now been published in “Biophysical Journal”.

The cells of the mouth, nose and intestinal mucosa produce large quantities of a chemical called sialic acid. Many bacteria possess a special transport system...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

Nothing will happen without batteries making it happen!

05.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Water - as the underlying driver of the Earth’s carbon cycle

17.01.2017 | Earth Sciences

Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

17.01.2017 | Materials Sciences

Smart homes will “LISTEN” to your voice

17.01.2017 | Architecture and Construction

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>