Martinsried, Germany-based Biomax has added new data-mining ammo to its BioXM knowledge-management platform by nabbing the Viscovery product line from Eudaptics Software of Vienna, Austria.
Eudaptics spun out its flagship Viscovery business earlier this month and will remain a holding company. Viscovery’s six staffers will remain in Vienna and will operate as a subsidiary of Biomax under the name of Viscovery Software. The acquisition brings Biomax’s total headcount to 70.
Gerhard Krenner, founder of Viscovery, told BioInform that his small group of data-mining specialists will serve as a data-mining “competence center” in Vienna.
Financial terms of the deal could not be disclosed by either company, officials from both firms said.
Biomax CEO Klaus Heumann told BioInform that the Viscovery suite will be available as a data-mining extension to the BioXM platform.
Biomax said that the combination of the two products will be particularly useful in areas such as biomarker identification, toxicology, and clinical research.
In addition, the transaction is expected to move both companies’ products into new markets. Unlike Biomax, Viscovery has not been focused on life sciences, but has instead concentrated on a range of markets – from finance and banking to retail, media, and insurance.
Heumann said that Viscovery’s data-mining capabilities are of particular value for biomarker research and that the software allows users to get a quick feel for whether a certain marker has predictive and selective potential for a clinical parameter of interest.
As an example, Heumann said that in an expression analysis experiment, one might capture a set of parameters about patients, such as age, gender, ethnicity, and disease state. However, when selecting a marker to specifically represent a disease type, it is important that the marker be selective only for that distinct disease type and that it doesn’t correlate with other parameters.
The Viscovery software provides a “condensed look” at large data sets alongside multiple clinical parameters provides in a graphical environment, he said. “It really reveals if my profile is significant.”
While “BioXM allows you to compile and structure what you know and have, in terms of information, and formulate a question, Viscovery allows you to explore … potential answers and … find the best answer.”
He added that while “BioXM allows you to compile and structure what you know and have, in terms of information, and formulate a question, Viscovery allows you to explore … potential answers and … find the best answer.”
One driver for the deal was the complementary nature of the two packages, he said.
“BioXM is a very generic solution with applications in many fields of the life sciences,” Heumann said. Viscovery, on the other hand, “is an established technology outside the life sciences but has the capability to be able to work with heterogeneous data sets intuitively, as they are typically handled by BioXM.”
When asked what he thinks scientists look for in a knowledge-management system, he said that researchers want to “combine publicly available knowledge with in-house information resources, to have a semantic integration so that these independent resources can really be operated from the perspective of the issue, the problem, the project [they] are working on.”
In addition to improvements to BioXM, it’s likely that the acquisition of Viscovery will have an impact on Biomax’s other offerings. Heumann said the company will release a press release “shortly” regarding an extension of its BioRS data-integration product.