Biogen is working with Columbia University Medical Center to build a database of genes and clinical traits from 1,500 people with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). The project, which is partly funded by cash raised in the Ice Bucket Challenge, is intended to help Biogen understand how genes contribute to different forms of ALS.
The first clutch of companies have graduated from Illumina Accelerator, the startup incubator program the sequencing giant set up last year. And with more than $40 million in VC cash secured to help the startups grow, Illumina is now looking for the next group of companies to join.
The National Institutes of Health is offering funding to research initiatives that make use of the Cancer Genomics Cloud Pilots. The NIH is hoping the next wave of projects will help the National Cancer Institute decide how to establish computational infrastructure to support genomics research.
Apple just gained a powerful ally in its push to make ResearchKit a core component of the health research toolkit. The Silicon Valley tech giant has tapped IBM for access to Watson, the data-mining and predictive analytics capabilities of which will be applied to health research.
Amgen's deCODE Genetics has released a glimpse of a future in which population-scale genome sequencing forms the basis of drug discovery programs. And while the initiative still has some technical shortcomings and has yet to prove to the outside world it is worth $415 million, it nonetheless sparked excitement in the genomics community.
The Google X lab that spawned smart contact lenses and self-driving cars is teaming up with Biogen Idec to unravel patient-to-patient variation in the progression of multiple sclerosis.
The 10 biotechs in the latest batch of Y Combinator startups--as well as those that have already graduated from the incubator--will receive $20,000 to spend at Transcriptic's automated life science laboratory.
The Nvidia Foundation has awarded $400,000 to computational cancer projects at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Stanford University. Nvidia backed the two projects--which took an equal split of the funding--as part of an initiative to finance programs that use parallel computing to advance cancer research.
Bioinformatics has taken another step toward cementing itself in the life sciences mainstream. The latest validation of the importance of informatics comes from the Association for Molecular Pathology, which has established a subdivision focused on the field.
Increased reliance on software to support aspects of drug development has simplified many tasks but created the possibility that an IT glitch could have far-reaching implications. Now, the European Medicines Agency is to discuss whether this situation has already happened.