Keeping Pace with Next Generation Genomics

At SC15, Dell will be making announcements about our industry-leading high performance computing (HPC) portfolio. One solution targets healthcare and it underscores how technology is being leveraged by the industry to enable new advancements in healthcare that we once thought were impossible. The Dell HPC System for Genomics is a tool for researchers and scientist to implement the next generation of genomic science.

Next-generation genomics is a confluence of the disruptive advancements in genome sequencing technology, including the adoption of Big Data management analytics and the science of bioinformatics that enables genetic discovery and genetic manipulation. Recent advances and releases in sequencing technology such as ThermoFisher Scientific Ion S5 being only a few generations from the Human Genome Project completion where it took over 10 years and over $2 billion to realized the promise of a blueprint of the human genome.

Next Generation Genomics calls for the analysis of thousands of genomes. The life sciences industry expects to better understand and apply this scientific discipline to many other branches of biological research — from cataloging genetic variation to manipulating genetic material and even “gene editing” some organisms. Major initiatives like the Precision Medicine Initiative and the 1000 Genomes Project in the U.S. and the 100,000 genomes project of Genomics England and The Cancer Genome Atlas are large projects that require next generation skills, technology, and management.

Genomics plays a role in nine of the 10 leading causes of death today. These large projects enable scientist to drastically ramp their genomic analysis and get the samples needed to move ahead in areas like cancer research, agriculture development, and translational medicine. The call is on for researchers to undertake population health studies using genomics information that can be used to understand diseases like Cancer, predict medication effects for these diseases and develop new therapies. The Human genome alone is made up of 21 billion base pairs (Gbp) and still today a whole genome is still rarely sequenced.

These recent advancements in sequencing and software technology coupled with advancements in processors, storage, networking and manageability enable a powerful, efficient computing platform can provide research scientists a low-cost, robust platform to operationalize their discoveries and realize the promise of genomics in the areas of healthcare, agriculture, and pharmaceuticals.  These professionals have come seeking a solution that will enable them to analyze this data efficiently, faster, so they can accelerate new discoveries, medications, and lifesaving treatments.

Dell, Intel and their partners are keeping pace with these advances and in meeting the needs of these researchers which not only incudes more performance for research but more efficiency for production and operations. At SC15 we will be demonstrating a suite of solutions designed for these projects that include our new generation of the Dell HPC System for Genomics, designed to process up to 160 whole genomes per day. Stop by booth #1009 and take a look at the tools for next generation genomics.

Additional references

 Image by Webridge (revised from) [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

About the Author: David Bump