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BGI, British Columbia Organizations to Collaborate on Precision Medicine

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – BGI and five British Columbia-based biomedical and healthcare organizations have allied on personalized medicine.

The Canadian partners include Providence Health Care, St. Paul's Foundation, the Vancouver Prostate Centre, Genome BC, and Deloitte. Together, the organizations will create "health centers of excellence" in Shenzen, China, where BGI is based, and Vancouver, British Columbia. Other potential collaboration activities include omics-based research on cancer, infectious disease, and pharmacogenomics; secure computing infrastructure for analysis of distributed research data sets; and basic and translational research projects on aging.

They signed a three-year memorandum of understanding today, concurrent with the American Society of Human Genetics 2016 annual meeting being held in Vancouver.

"This partnership links the best researchers in British Columbia and China with cutting-edge genomic technologies to share expertise and accelerate innovation on a global scale," Providence Health Care CEO Dianne Doyle said in a statement.

The partners have proposed a joint research center featuring BGI's next-generation sequencing services at Providence's new St. Paul's Hospital campus. The center will be available to researchers and clinicians from the University of British Columbia Faculty Of Medicine, they said. 

Deloitte will contribute expertise in managing big data, the partners said.

The consortium members "anticipate working with the University of British Columbia and the UBC Faculty of Medicine on the future initiatives and agreements coming out of this international collaboration."

Earlier this year, BGI renewed its partnership on a joint research laboratory with the Vancouver Prostate Centre.