Computing cluster speeds targeted treatments for childhood cancer – Healthcare IT News – 18 May 2012

Posted on May 21, 2012. Filed under: Child Health / Paediatrics, Genomics, Oncology |

Computing cluster speeds targeted treatments for childhood cancer – Healthcare IT News – 18 May 2012

Mike Miliard, Managing Editor

“AUSTIN – Cloud-based research technology launched by Dell last year for the Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen) is gearing up for what’s billed as the world’s first precision medicine clinical trial for pediatric cancer.

James Coffin, vice president and general manager, Dell Healthcare and Life Sciences, says the eight-teraflop supercomputer, billed as the “kids cloud,” will drastically reduce the time required to identify personalized treatments for children participating in the trial program – kids who have no time to spare. In turn, that acceleration can help open the trials up to participation from more children.

The Human Genome Project “took $3 billion and 10 years” to sequence the first genome, he points out. “A year ago, it took about nine months and cost about $400,000 or $500,000 to do a full genome.”

And recently, says Coffin, “we just ran a test for a full genome for a patient, and got all the the results and made a clinical decision for the patient to the tumor board in less than five days.”

Dell has “done a lot of work to retune the codes and make them run really fast on this platform,” he says. “Just three months ago, the analysis of 25 million bases – there’s usually about 500 or 600 million bases you have to do to kind of do this whole genome sequence – and 25 million bases took about 48 hours.”

Now, that time is down to six hours.”

… continues on the site

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