Friday, March 5, 2010

Industry Challenges: Drowning In Data

Digital sequencing systems can capture vast amounts of genetic data, but interpretation has been difficult. Credit: Monty Rakusen/Getty Images

From Technology Review:

The personalized-medicine industry aims to convert information about an individual's genome into useful diagnostic tests and targeted drug treatments. Companies that deal with gathering the information--sequencing genomes and identifying genetic variations--have made impressive technical advances that have dramatically reduced the cost of analyzing DNA (see "Faster Tools to Scrutinize the Genome"). Now the biggest challenge lies in interpreting the huge volume of genetic data being generated. Studies have identified thousands of candidates for genes underlying common diseases, for example, but it's not clear how to make that information medically useful.

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