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News Briefs: EHR Certifications, Orphan Disease Market, Supercomputing Huntington's Disease

September 6, 2012 | Bio-IT World news briefs 

CCHIT Named Authorized Certification Body for EHRs  

The Certification Commission for Health Information Technology (CCHIT) has been named an authorized certification body by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) to certify electronic health records (EHRs) for the Permanent Certification Program for Health Information Technology. CCHIT previously was an authorized testing and certification body for the Temporary Certification Program. The Permanent Certification Program becomes effective on Oct. 4, 2012, and will be known thereafter as the ONC HIT Certification Program. Department of Health and Human Services establishes the Permanent Certification Program for Health Information Technology  

GNS Focuses Platform on Huntington’s Disease  

GNS Healthcare and the CHDI Foundation have agreed to create a data-driven computer model of Huntington’s disease (HD), a debilitating neurodegenerative disorder for which there are currently no effective therapies. Created using GNS’s supercomputer-driven REFS (Reverse Engineering and Forward Simulation) platform, the aim is to help researchers discover novel therapies for the disease. For more on GNS and REFS, see Tailoring Medicine with Supercomputers (March 2010) and GNS Healthcare Aids Search for Fresh Leads on CHF Readmissions (March 2012).   



Orphan Drug Market Outpaces Others 





Thomson Reuters’s report on orphan drugs reveals that an estimated 25 million Americans live with an orphan disease and that the total present value for drugs targeting these diseases is $637 million. The compound annual growth rate for these drugs from 2001-2010 was 25.8% compared to 20.1% for other drugs. Thomson Reuters compiled the data for its report using Thomson Reuters Cortellis and other information platforms. For more on Cortellis, see Thomson Reuters Releases APIs for Cortellis Life Sciences Platform (February 2012). Forbes’ coverage of the orphan drug report.   

Roche Banks on Personalized Medicine  

Roche reports that more than 60% of its pharmaceutical pipeline projects have companion diagnostics in development. The big pharma identified personalized medicine as a key driver of its growth in the future. Reuters  

Updated NGS Analysis Software  

SoftGenetics announced the release of its latest version of NextGENe software for the analysis of data from all NGS platforms. The new version of the software adds new tools for HLA analysis, acceptance of SOLiD System XSQ format, improved assembly of Ion PGM data with a new coverage normalization capability to the FLOTON assembler, automatic report generation capabilities, importation and filtering of COSMIC database information, filtering by VCF files, export to VAR-MD, (VAR-MD is a tool developed by NIH to analyze Mendelian inheritance patterns), several new quality metric reporting capabilities, Gene Association Comparison, expanded Expression Report grouping options and many other reporting and display options. SoftGenetics  


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