Soon scientists and clinicians will use new DNA technologies to detect mutations driving cancer and other diseases, identify new strains of pathogens, track subtle changes in our immune repertoire, predict drug response, and make innumerable other contributions to our health. The scale and complexity of the data will vastly exceed anything the medical community has faced before. My group is tackling this challenge by applying advanced engineering and new computer algorithms to revolutionize medicine through deeper, ubiquitous use of DNA information.
I am a co-founder and leader of the Data Working Group of the Global Alliance for Genomics and Health, composed of research, health care, and disease advocacy organizations that have taken the first steps to standardize and enable secure sharing of genomic and clinical data.
I am also co-founder of the Treehouse Childhood Cancer Initiative. The mission of the UC Santa Cruz Genomics Institute’s Treehouse Childhood Cancer Initiative is to change the story for childhood cancer patients by employing genomic data and computational approaches that could identify less toxic and more effective treatments. Treehouse analyzes a child’s cancer data against both childhood and adult patient cohorts across all types of cancer. This “pan-cancer” analysis of adult and pediatric tumors may identify situations where an adult drug is predicted to work on a subset of pediatric patients.