DNAstack today announced its participation in a new project to accelerate the development of a national software platform for precision health in Canada.
The project — in which Deloitte, Genome BC, LifeLabs, Microsoft, Molecular You, Provincial Health Services Authority, and the University of British Columbia will also participate — is among the first to be selected and launched as part of Canada’s Digital Technology Supercluster, a federally funded program that recently received over $150M to stimulate the creation of competitive and innovative digital technology solutions for top industries.
With support from the Canadian government, the team is building a powerful new software platform that will make it easier for healthcare organizations, academic researchers, clinical laboratories, pharmaceutical companies, and other innovators to harness exponentially growing volumes of genomic and biomedical data. The platform will help drive new scientific discoveries and inform medical decisions, translating into more personalized and cost-effective healthcare for millions of Canadians.
The platform has been designed from the ground up around modern principles of data security, sharing, and analysis, and serves as an alternative path for organizations looking to avoid enormous, ongoing cost burdens associated with purchasing and maintaining local computational infrastructure. The platform is already being piloted with early adopters across the country, where it has proven to be dramatically more powerful, secure, cost-efficient, and accessible compared to other existing solutions. The project team aims to deliver the most advanced platform for precision health in the country, positioning healthcare organizations to roll out new programs that reap significant health and economic benefits for years to come.
“We’re laying the foundation for the future of genomic and biomedical science, where the combination of networked data and powerful technology is used to generate life-saving insights faster than ever before,” said Dr. Marc Fiume, CEO and Co-Founder at DNAstack. “With this platform, we’re empowering scientists to take big data, cloud computing, and machine learning to the fight against the biggest challenges in health.”
“We’re empowering scientists to take big data, cloud computing, and machine learning to the fight against the biggest challenges in health.” — Marc Fiume, CEO at DNAstack
The platform will provide easy to use tools for data producers (e.g. principal investigators, diagnostics laboratories, hospital systems, patient advocacy groups, individuals) to connect and administer the secure sharing of their datasets, and for data consumers (e.g. academic, clinical, pharmaceutical, and industry researchers) to discover and analyze that data using both gold standard and custom applications. Individual users of the platform will be able to perform intense statistical and machine learning analyses with on-demand access to hundreds of thousands of compute cores, more than 10 times the computing power of some of the most equipped research institutions in Canada.
For DNAstack, the project is a continuation of years of global leadership and product innovation in the space. Since 2014, DNAstack has been an active member of the Global Alliance for Genomics & Health (GA4GH), where it contributes to the development of open standards for interoperable data sharing and analysis. This project is integrating key GA4GH protocols for identity, access, discovery, and analysis. In 2018, DNAstack co-founded the Canadian Genomics Cloud, the most computationally powerful public cloud platform for genomics and precision medicine in Canada, which is actively being used by leading scientists across the country to study the genetic causes of autism, adult cancer, pediatric cancer, heart disease, mental health, cystic fibrosis, and other rare diseases. DNAstack is now working in close collaboration with partners of the Digital Technology Supercluster, having diverse and complementary expertise, to introduce entirely new features to the market.
“We are supporting ambitious opportunities that can’t be tackled by one company alone. Through a collective effort, this project aims to make a global impact and position Canada as a world leader in health,” said Bill Tam, Vice President of Business Development and Partner Relations for Canada’s Digital Technology Supercluster. “We are proud that the Supercluster has created an elevated platform for leading Canadian SMEs like DNAstack to continue to innovate and grow.” — Bill Tam, Vice Presdient of Business Development and Partner Releations, Canada’s Digital Technology Supercluster