Drug discovery is data-hungry and all major pharmaceutical companies maintain extensive in-house instances of public data alongside internal. Analysis and hypothesis generation for drug-discovery projects requires assembly, overlay and comparison of data from many sources, requiring shared identifiers and common semantics. Expression profiles need to be overlaid with gene or pathway identifiers and reports on compound pharmacology. Alignment and integration of internal and public data and information sources is a significant effort and the process is repeated across companies, institutes and academic laboratories. This represents a significant waste and an opportunity cost.
To address these challenges, the Open PHACTS project will develop an open access innovation platform, Open Pharmacological Space (OPS), via a semantic web approach. OPS will comprise data, vocabularies and infrastructure needed to accelerate drug-oriented research. This semantic integration hub will remove key bottlenecks in small molecule drug discovery: disparate information sources, lack of standards and common identifiers, guided by well defined research questions from drug discovery.
Workflows for data capture, processing, interoperability, visualization, and chemogenomics will be developed creating a comprehensive Systems Chemical Biology Analysis Network. Security issues around proprietary data, shared via the Open PHACTS Discovery Platform and accessible for safe querying and reasoning will be properly addressed with expert trusted parties.
The Open PHACTS consortium comprises 20 European academic and SME partners, with leading experts in the fields of data mining, annotation, small molecule data storage and manipulation, target bioinformatics, RDF information handling, massive in silico reasoning and chemical biology. The 10 EFPIA members of Open PHACTS will contribute drug discovery expertise, data sets, software engineering and programming capacity to the project.
Fields of science
Call for proposal
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