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Scalable, Secure Storage of Biobank Data

Project description

Intelligent Information Management
BiobankCloud - your PaaS for Biobanking

The storage infrastructure for human biological material is generally known as a biobank. One of the main tenets of biobanking is the digitization of our genomic information for its archival and analysis. That is, in the future, vast amounts of genomic data will be derived from biomaterials stored in biobanks. The scale of the storage requirements for genomic data is huge - a single human genome amounts to coping with the analysis of three billion base pairs. In addition to the storage of genomic data, its analysis will require both massive parallel computing infrastructure and data-intensive computing tools and services to perform analyses in reasonable time. As of 2013, a huge wave of big data is approaching, driven by the decreasing cost of sequencing genomic data, which has been halving every 4 months since 2004. Biobanks store and catalogue human biological material, but they are not prepared to handle this wave of data - there is a biobank bottleneck.

Big data is coming to Biobanks, driven by the decreasing cost of sequencing genomic data, which has been halving every 4 months since 2004. Biobanks, used to store and catalogue human biological material, are not prepared to handle this wave of data - there is a Biobank bottleneck: a lack of platform support for the storage and analysis of the coming wave of human genomic data. In this project, we will develop a cloud-computing platform as a service (PaaS) for Biobanking. The platform will provide security, storage, data-intensive tools and algorithms, and support for allowing Biobanks to share data with one another, all within the existing regulatory frameworks for Biobanking. Our research challenges include: the definition of the regulatory framework and data model for Biobank data sharing; the development of a scalable, highly available storage infrastructure; data-intensive tools and workflows for aligning, clustering, aggregating, compressing and anonymizing sequence data; a security platform that ensures data confidentiality, data integrity, and data access auditing; the inter-connection of Biobanks, while also leveraging the storage and processing capacity of public clouds; and the integration of these components as a PaaS.The project will require focused inter-disciplinary research. We have assembled a consortium containing complementary competencies, from developers and users of Biobanks to systems researchers with deep expertise in building dependable and scalable software platforms. Our platform will be evaluated and disseminated at existing Biobanks in Sweden and Germany. Our project goal is to have BiobankCloud remove the Biobank bottleneck, enabling global leadership for European Biobanks, with improved support for preventing diseases, spotting trends, and advancing our understanding of clinical and molecular pathology.

Call for proposal

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Coordinator Contact



Brinellvagen 8
100 44 Stockholm

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Östra Sverige Stockholm Stockholms län
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Rita Fjällendahl (Mrs.)
EU contribution
No data

Participants (5)