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French Consortium Launches Clinical Exome Interpretation Project for Cancer Patients

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – A French group spearheaded by genomics services provider IntegraGen said today that it would collaborate on a project to develop software to support data interpretation of next-generation sequencing of cancer patients.

The goal of the Interpretation of Clinical Exome (ICE) project is to provide better diagnoses and develop a data-driven approach for identifying targeted treatment options.

IntegraGen will lead the group, which will also include cancer research institute Gustave Roussy, technology consulting firm and Capgemini Group subsidiary Sogeti High Tech, and the French National Health and Medical Research Institute (INSERM).

The ICE Project will receive €2.2 million ($3 million) in funding as part of a call for proposals for the 17th Single Interministerial Fund.

"Genomic sequencing has been revolutionized by the advent of newer technologies that utilize massively parallel sequencing in order to greatly reduce the cost and time of data generation," IntegraGen Chairman and CEO Bernard Courtieu said in a statement. "As a result, the bottleneck is now the management of tens of gigabytes of data that represent the exome and transcriptome of a patient's tumor. The ICE Project will allow clinicians to treat patients according to the biological characteristics of their tumor."

"The exponential growth in the availability of sequencing data from the tumors of cancer patients makes it essential to develop tools that permit the isolation of patient specific data with the associated identification of information which impacts the clinical care of patients," Eric Solary, research director of Gustave Roussy and director of the Inserm Unit Normals and Pathologics Haematopoiesis, said in the statement. "Access to sequencing data of all coding genes of a patient requires a thorough review of the sequencing results and automated assistance [of] its interpretation, otherwise the data will not be usable or compatible with the timely management of cancer patients."

The partners aim to finalize a first version of the software tool in 2016.

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