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Genedata joins EU cancer research project

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Genedata, a provider of software for drug discovery and life science research, has announced a partnership with EpiFemCare, the EU-funded research project to improve the diagnosis and therapy of breast and ovarian cancer.

Scientists from Genedata will manage, process and analyse terabytes of epigenetic and clinical data from next-generation sequencing, microarray and qPCR experiments to help identify, confirm and clinically validate biomarkers. These should lead to significant improvements in early cancer detection and subsequent patient care. The project will also use Genedata Expressionist, the leading data analysis and management platform for oncology research.

One of the project's research challenges is the management of complex and large datasets produced by next-generation technologies. Genedata scientists will use Genedata Expressionist to identify the most relevant DNA methylation sites, within tens of terabytes of data, which can accurately diagnose breast and ovarian cancer.

Resulting biomarkers will be confirmed by independent sample sets and finally validated in large clinical cohorts with more than 200,000 patient samples from which more than 7,000 will be tested.

'Currently, many women face a diagnosis of advanced ovarian cancer or breast cancer over-diagnosis due to lack of suitable early-detection tests and over-zealous screening procedures,' noted Martin Widschwendter, the EpiFemCare project coordinator, from the Department of Women's Cancer at the University College London.

'We look forward to collaborating with Genedata and using their epigenetics and oncology expertise to develop innovative blood-based tests with increased sensitivity to ovarian cancers and increased specificity for breast cancers.'