In the fight to cure cancer, increased diversity between the clinicians and academic researchers and engineers and computer scientists is the key to finding the breakthrough that cancer researchers have sought for many years, according to Mary Stenzel-Poore, senior associate dean for research at Oregon Health and Sciences University.
Stenzel-Poore recently discussed the collaboration in cancer research between OHSU and Intel, her role as liason in that partnership, and how their work is making it easier to find the proper cancer treatment for individuals worldwide.
During the CloudNOW 5th Annual “Top 10 Women in Cloud” Innovation Awards in Mountain View, CA, Stenzel-Poore spoke with Lisa Martin (@Luccazara), host of theCUBE*, SiliconANGLE Media’s mobile live streaming studio. (*Disclosure below) CloudNOW is a non-profit consortium of leading women in cloud computing and converging technologies.
Removing barriers to progress
As in most collaborations that involve multiple organizations, there are normally issues that can affect how successful the partners are, such data security, patient privacy issues or simply who gets to take credit for what. However, in an unusual alliance, OHSU agreed to work with Intel, with the sole goal being advancement of cancer research instead of financial gain or patent ownership. And in the role for which she won her “Top Women in Cloud” award, Stenzel-Poore was the liason between the two organizations, helping to facilitate communication between the two.
“We worked together to solve what has been an intractable problem. OHSU and Intel took the opportunity to say, “‘We are not going to do business as we usually do. We are going to remove barriers to collaboration,'” said Stenzel-Poore. “We are not going to worry about who owns what, we are going to take on the most difficult problem, cancer, and provide a solution. And that is what we’ve done.”
Collaborative Cancer Cloud
While OHSU Intel have been working together on some level for decades, it was only in the past two years that the two began to utilize Intel’s compute resources to create a computer architecture that any cancer researcher can join, known as the Collaborative Cancer Cloud.
The CCC allows cancer researchers to share patient data that is relevant to their research, without compromising the patient’s private information. This system will allow enormous amounts of sequenced genome data from individual patients to be stored centrally so that other researchers can use the data bank to craft individual treatment plans for existing patients.
“I believe that we have a solution that will allow institutions across the world to share data securely, maintain patient privacy and control the data at the institution site, which will really allow us to come up with the most important treatments for patients with cancer,” said Stenzel-Poore. “Because you know, cancer is a completely unique disease in each person, and if we really can compare the data from one patient to millions of patients’ samples, we can come up with what’s the best treatment for that patient.”
Watch the complete video interview below, and be sure to check out more of SiliconANGLE and theCUBE’s coverage of the CloudNOW – 5th Annual “Top 10 Women in Cloud” Innovation Awards. (*Disclosure: Some segments on SiliconANGLE Media’s theCUBE are sponsored. However, no sponsorships have editorial control over content on theCUBE or SiliconANGLE.)