Federal Researchers Build Massive Online Database of Genomic Data

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The portal is supposed to help biomedical researchers analyze similar individuals across many studies.

A new online portal would let scientists access vast amounts of genomic data from patients involved in heart, lung, blood and sleep research studies.

The hub, called GenPort, is supposed to help researchers look into the results of several studies at once, tracking individuals in different trials who might share the same characteristics, known as “synthetic cohorts.”

The Health and Human Services Department is currently looking for small businesses who can help build that hub, so even researchers without informatics or genomics training can make “practical use” of data from cohort studies other scientists have already conducted.

GenPort’s software and tools will be “open source, transportable, and freely shared,” according to the HHS posting.

The cloud-based resource also aims to let researchers visualize and analyze that data. 

HHS’ National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute is also working on a Whole Genome Sequencing effort that would sequence genetic data from about 20,000 people in heart, lung, blood and sleep studies, who will be the basis for the GenPort cohorts, according to an earlier posting on FedBizOpps.

Nextgov has requested additional comment from NHLBI.