Medicine in the “big data” era



American geneticist, Craig Venter will be embarking on his project entitled, “Discovering the secret of a long life” in January 2015. He revealed his ambition in an interview with Le Monde.

 

His company, Human Longevity, Inc., is currently recruiting bio-computer scientists and statisticians to analyse all of the data documented on the basis of genome sequencing involving tens of thousands of volunteers. From January 2015 onwards, the Company will start to collect “genetic profiles” in the United States and on other continents. “The aim is to enrol 40,000 volunteers a year initially, and up to 100,000 in a second phase”.

 

For what purpose?

 

Craig Venter, the first person whose genome was completely sequenced and published in 2007, explains that his expertise “will be highly sought after by hospitals as these establishments will soon be sequencing the genomes of their patients and striving to understand the process”. The ultimate goal is not to live longer, explained Craig Venter, but to “grow old healthily”. All of the data collated “will guide pharmaceutical laboratories in their quest to discover new treatments and this will enable patients to adopt a lifestyle best suited to their genetic heritage”.


Sources: 

Le Monde (Chloé Hecketsweiler) 01/09/2014