September 6, 2018

Q&A with Dr. Christina Yung, OICR’s new Director of Genome Informatics

OICR welcomes Dr. Christina Yung as Director of Genome Informatics. Yung is returning to OICR from the University of Chicago where she led and managed the National Cancer Institute’s Genomic Data Commons (GDC) – a unified data system that promotes the sharing of genomic and clinical data between researchers.

Continue reading – Q&A with Dr. Christina Yung, OICR’s new Director of Genome Informatics

May 23, 2018

OICR’s Cancer Genome Collaboratory wins 2018 OpenStack Superuser award for contributions to the cancer research community

Vincent Ferretti's lab at work.

Based on popular vote and review by the Superuser Editorial Advisory Board, OICR’s Cancer Genome Collaboratory team has won the 2018 OpenStack Vancouver Summit Superuser Award. The Award recognizes OICR’s use of OpenStack, an open-source software platform for cloud computing, to enable cancer research worldwide. Previous winners of the Superuser Award include AT&T, CERN and Comcast.

“We’re proud to be recognized by the greater research community that we support,” Vincent Ferretti, Director and Senior Principal Investigator, Genome Informatics at OICR, says. “OpenStack has helped us contribute to the cancer research community in Ontario, across Canada and internationally.”

Continue reading – OICR’s Cancer Genome Collaboratory wins 2018 OpenStack Superuser award for contributions to the cancer research community

May 10, 2018

Symposium offers preview of findings from the Pan-Cancer Analysis of Whole Genomes project

PCAWG researchers pose for a group photo.

On April 13, researchers from around the world gathered at the MaRS Centre in Toronto to get a sneak peek at the findings from the Pan-Cancer Analysis of Whole Genomes (PCAWG) project. PCAWG is an ambitious international effort to comprehensively understand the non-protein coding elements of the genome, which make up 97 per cent of the genome but have been little studied in the context of cancer.

Continue reading – Symposium offers preview of findings from the Pan-Cancer Analysis of Whole Genomes project

February 9, 2017

ICGCmed will provide wealth of vital new information to scientists

ICGCmed - Image from white paper

The ability to sequence and study the human genome and the genomes of different cancer types has allowed scientists to increase our understanding of the biology of these diseases. In turn this has helped to create new preventative strategies, diagnostic and prognostic tools as well as better treatments. But what if there was a way to make this information even more useful? An international group is working to establish a project that will do just that.

Continue reading – ICGCmed will provide wealth of vital new information to scientists

October 25, 2016

From our Annual Report: Constructing the cloud

Illustration showing clouds

OICR’s reputation as leader in managing and analyzing big data has grown over the past year as the Institute has worked with private and public partners to bring more genomic and health data to the cloud.

Continue reading – From our Annual Report: Constructing the cloud

July 20, 2016

A challenge to the community to improve RNA sequencing data

rna-seq

A new DREAM Challenge was launched on June 30 focusing on the abnormal RNA molecules in cancer cells. The ICGC-TCGA DREAM SMC-RNA Challenge is an international effort designed to improve standard methods for identifying cancer-associated rearrangements in RNA sequencing (RNA-seq) data, providing new tools for cancer researchers. Improved RNA sequencing data will allow researchers to better understand cancer leading to new and better-personalized approaches to cancer treatment.

The Challenge is open to the entire research community, and anyone interested in participating is encouraged to register at https://synapse.org/SMC_RNA.

Continue reading – A challenge to the community to improve RNA sequencing data

July 14, 2016

International team launches community competition to unravel how cancer changes a cell’s RNA

Logos of the Challenge partners

An open challenge that merges the efforts of the International Cancer Genome Consortium, The Cancer Genome Atlas, and the NCI Cloud Pilots with Sage Bionetworks and the open science DREAM Challenge community

Continue reading – International team launches community competition to unravel how cancer changes a cell’s RNA

May 16, 2016

Dr. Peter Lichter discusses ICGCmed

Dr. Peter LichterICGCmed launched this April (see story on ICGCmed’s launch). We spoke to Dr. Peter Lichter, Head of the Division of Molecular Genetics at the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) about why ICGCmed is needed and what the next steps are to ensure the consortium can meet its ambitious goals. 

Why is ICGCmed necessary, and why now?
Researchers worldwide are currently exploring how to bring more precision oncology to the clinic. The goal is to develop a new approach to how we treat cancer patients that is more specific to their individual type of cancer. Currently, at many places clinical studies are being launched addressing similar questions. An international network of such studies would not only harmonize these initiatives and develop common standards, it would also greatly accelerate the process of validating the concept and provide guidelines to physicians who are not yet familiar with this approach.

Continue reading – Dr. Peter Lichter discusses ICGCmed

May 5, 2016

The launch of ICGCmed

The International Cancer Genome Consortium for Medicine (ICGCmed) is a new global initiative that will combine genomic data with clinical and health information.

ICGCmed - Image from white paper

In 2008 the International Cancer Genome (ICGC) launched with an ambitious goal: to map 25,000 cancer genomes from 50 different tumour types and make the data available to qualified researchers around the world. Today the ICGC is well on its way to this target, with over 15,000 genomes already available to researchers, and many more on the way.

About two years ago, it became clear to ICGC members that the future of cancer treatment would require far more than just the descriptive catalogue of genomic alterations that ICGC was building. While ICGC’s work was the essential foundation for further research, the members identified that the needed to explore tumour alterations more extensively for more rare events and link the genomic data to clinical information.

Continue reading – The launch of ICGCmed

April 17, 2016

International Cancer Genome Consortium for Medicine (ICGCmed) launches today, will link genomics to clinical information and health

ICGC med logoNew Orleans – (April 17, 2016) The International Cancer Genome Consortium (ICGC) today announced plans to launch the International Cancer Genome Consortium for Medicine (ICGCmed), a new phase in the Consortium’s evolution that will link genomics to clinical information and health.

The collaborative project will build upon the vast database of genomic discoveries of the ICGC, which, since its launch in 2007, has been mapping 25,000 different cancer genomes in 50 different tumour types and making this data freely available to qualified researchers around the world.

Continue reading – International Cancer Genome Consortium for Medicine (ICGCmed) launches today, will link genomics to clinical information and health

March 2, 2016

New ICGC-TCGA DREAM Challenge crowd-sourced competition to help better understand how cancers evolve

Crowd sourcing illustrationOn November 16 the ICGC-TCGA DREAM Challenge launched a new crowd-sourced competition to better understand how cancer originates and evolves. It is the first project in the world to bring together crowd-sourced benchmarking and cloud-based execution of DNA sequencing analysis pipelines in an effort to improve the understanding of tumour DNA.

Continue reading – New ICGC-TCGA DREAM Challenge crowd-sourced competition to help better understand how cancers evolve

March 1, 2016

International Cancer Genome Consortium reaches milestone of 1,000 authorized users

TORONTO, March 1, 2016 /CNW/ – The International Cancer Genome Consortium (ICGC) announced today that its Data Access Compliance Office (DACO) authorized its 1,000th user, giving them access to the Consortium’s Controlled Access datasets. This means that more authorized researchers than ever before are accessing ICGC’s Controlled Access data for their research and using these datasets as the foundation for the next generation of cancer diagnostics and treatments.

ICGC datasets that catalogue tumour-specific mutations are unrestricted and freely available to the scientific community. However, the ICGC developed an authorization process to distribute clinical and inherited genetic data associated with unique individuals in order to minimize the risk of identification of donors based on computer analyses of demographic, clinical or genetic data.

Continue reading – International Cancer Genome Consortium reaches milestone of 1,000 authorized users

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