News

ONC: Interoperability shortcomings limiting impact of EHRs

The Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT published its annual report on the adoption and use of electronic health records.

VC shop follows Y Combinator into the world of biotech incubators

Another incubator is ready to test Y Combinator's theory that it is possible to get a biotech-related startup off the ground with smaller sums of money than ever before. VC shop SOS Ventures is offering startups working broadly in biology $35,000 in seed funding, mentors and lab space at incubators in San Francisco and Cork, Ireland.

Google joins BRAIN Initiative to help with petabyte-scale data sets

The National Institutes of Health has kicked off the BRAIN Initiative by awarding $46 million to 58 projects. And Google has come on board as a commercial partner to develop software and infrastructure to handle the petabyte-scale data sets the projects are expected to generate.

Wall Street turns to social-listening tools to guide pharma bets

The explosion in online discussions about medicines and the rise of social-listening tools to mine and analyze the data have given drugmakers another way to learn what patients think about their products. But pharma companies aren't the only ones listening. Wall Street has its ear to the digital grapevine, too.

Facebook mulls move into healthcare sector

Reuters reports that Facebook is considering setting up patient support communities and has met with people in the medical industry to discuss its plans.

EMA overturns ban on data downloads in final transparency policy

After years of debate and a late controversy, the European Medicines Agency has adopted a clinical trial transparency policy that will come into force on January 1. And unlike a recent draft of the policy, the final version allows researchers to download the data.

IT projects grab slice of $102M round of PCORI funding

The Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute has handed out another tranche of funding, bringing its total awards up to $671 million. Among the recipients of the most recent $102 million are projects to improve the use of electronic health records in comparative-effectiveness research and develop data analysis tools that preserve patient privacy.

Illumina teams with AB Sciex to add proteomics apps to BaseSpace

Illumina has teamed up with AB Sciex to add proteomic data analysis capabilities to its BaseSpace platform. As a result of the collaboration, Illumina is hosting four apps for processing, analyzing and visualizing proteomics mass spectrometry data on BaseSpace.

PatientPowered.us wins PCORI clinical trial matchmaking app competition

In the years since the Affordable Care Act birthed the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute, the group has committed resources to lowering barriers between those who participate in and run clinical trials. The latest element of this initiative has now come to fruition, with PCORI naming PatientPowered.us as the winner of its Matchmaking App Challenge.

The FDA commits $16M to track prescription drug use

The FDA has set aside $16 million for tracking which drugs are used, in what combinations and for how long, Regulatory Focus reports.

NIH backs database-driven approach to neuromuscular research

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has awarded a clutch of big-name academic centers funding to create a database for studying motor neuron disorders. By embarking on a large-scale data generation drive and analyzing the resulting information, the collaborators hope to build profiles for Lou Gehrig's disease and other neuromuscular conditions.

Medidata stung by $4.8M wire transfer fraud

Medidata has promised to review its financial controls after fraudsters made away with $4.8 million. Midlevel employees in the eClinical company's finance department reportedly made the transfer to an overseas bank account after receiving a request for $4.8 million.

FDA's Mini-Sentinel set to graduate on October 1

The FDA's Mini-Sentinel has long since outgrown its "mini" moniker and is now ready to graduate from being a pilot project to being an integral part of the agency's drug-safety infrastructure. Many people welcome the program's progress, but doubts and dissenting voices remain.

BIO, PhRMA seek FDA reassurance over scope of Twitter guidance

The window for commenting on the FDA's draft guidance on pharma's use of Twitter and other social media slammed shut last week, leaving the agency with a stack of feedback to consider. Many of the respondents are unhappy with the draft, which was called unconstitutional and overbroad.

BBK bags $3M to expand its eClinical suite

BBK Worldwide has raised $3 million to finance an expansion of its suite of eClinical software.

Merck survey finds patients willing to share NGS data with pharma companies

With pharma companies fretting about the cost of co-developing biomarkers for cancer drugs during early development, Merck staffers have proposed a novel solution: Pay for patients to have their tumors sequenced. Survey data suggest patients are open to the idea.

Stanford and Duke to trial Apple's HealthKit for remote data collection

Apple rolled out the latest iteration of its mobile operating system this week, but users will have to wait until the end of the month to get hold of the much-discussed HealthKit platform.

Vivametrica makes pitch for mHealth data aggregation and analysis market

The market for mHealth data aggregation platforms has become increasingly congested over the past year, with Apple and Google joining the more healthcare industry-focused Validic. Now Vivametrica has joined the space, outlining plans for a platform that fixes the inconsistencies in data from consumer mHealth products and combines them with outputs from medical devices.

AstraZeneca opens Indian IT center as 13-year outsourcing experiment nears end

AstraZeneca is following the well-trodden path of offshoring part of its IT to India. But unlike some of its peers--and in a reversal of its own strategy--the Big Pharma is adding in-house capacity and lessening its reliance on IT service providers.

TransCelerate shares its take on risk-based monitoring models and tech

With clinical trial sponsors spending a sizable chunk of their huge Phase III trial budgets on source data verification in return for questionable benefits, risk-based monitoring is an obvious target for TransCelerate BioPharma's R&D efficiency agenda. The Big Pharma consortium has further clarified its thinking on the topic in two research papers.