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Bio-IT World Best Practices Awards

Advanced Deadline February 6, 2016
Entry Form

Celebrating Excellence in Innovation

The 2016 Bio-IT World Best Practices competition has released its call for entries.  Bio-IT World has held the Best Practices awards since 2003, highlighting outstanding examples of technology innovation in the life sciences, from basic R&D to translational medicine. We particularly encourage vendors to nominate entries from valued academic and/or industry partners.

Submitting your organization’s entry is straightforward:

  • Send us a brief overview of your technology, including a statement of the issue or problem at hand, the innovative approach or technology applied, and the ROI (Return on Investment) in terms of scientific insights, cost savings, productivity, etc. (entry form and full details here)
  • Entries will be accepted until February 6, 2016. 
  • All entries will be judged by an expert panel in February/March 2016.
  • Winners will be announced in a plenary session at Bio-IT World Conference & Expo, Boston, April 5- April 7, 2016.
  • All winners will be featured in follow-up profiles in Bio-IT World.

Please send entries or direct any questions to Allison Proffitt.

2015 Best Practices Winners


 The grand prize trophies were presented to the following organizations in these categories:

Clinical & Health IT: AstraZeneca and Tessella

Real Time Analytics for Clinical Trials (REACT)

AstraZeneca’s REACT system, implemented with input from Tessella, tracks vital statistics, laboratory tests and adverse events on both population and subject-specific levels during the course of a clinical trial. By collecting this information together in a platform with flexible visualization and query features, as well as a complete profile for each patient, REACT allows AstraZeneca to respond rapidly to safety concerns and swiftly identify risk factors for adverse events, protecting trial participants while rescuing trials from costly late-stage failures.

Research & Drug Discovery: U-BIOPRED

tranSMART-Based U-BIOPRED Study

Through the U-BIOPRED Knowledge Portal, built into the tranSMART platform for clinical and -omics data management, a consortium of over 30 partners from industry and academia were able to securely share longitudinal clinical, proteomic, and transcriptomic data on hundreds of respiratory disease patients in a search for key biomarkers.

Informatics: The Pistoia Alliance

Hierarchical Editing Language for Macromolecules (HELM)

HELM is a system of standardized naming for complex biomolecules, which defines these molecules as rigorously as chemists have long defined simpler compounds. By describing biomolecules through a hierarchical sequence of monomers, the open source HELM technology allows researchers and organizations to rapidly enter, share, and modify molecules without ambiguity.

IT Infrastructure & HPC: Baylor College of Medicine with DNAnexus

CHARGE: Large-Scale Genomic Analysis in the Cloud

To fulfill its role in the CHARGE (Cohorts for Heart and Aging Research in Genomic Epidemiology) Consortium, Baylor College of Medicine undertook the largest genome analytics project in the cloud to date, using the DNAnexus platform. Using DNAnexus allowed Baylor to annotate 4,000 whole genomes and 11,000 whole exomes in record time, without monopolizing the local compute cluster.

Knowledge Management: Genentech

Genentech Cell Line Resource

Genentech’s centralized cell line bank contains over 1,800 cell lines, each represented by an average of 90,000 vials. By creating the gCell web platform to track and characterize these cell lines, Genentech has been able to create a genetic definition of each line, flag contamination and mislabeling, and curate new knowledge about individual cell lines to guide and optimize future research.

Judges’ Prize: UK National Health Service

Riak Deployment for Spine2 Distributed Database

The Spine database connects patient and services information across 27,000 British organizations that provide NHS care. By implementing Basho’s open source Riak database for the Spine2 overhaul of this system, the NHS can now instantaneously update information on any of the 80 million patients it serves, such that the new information is visible to any care provider, while maintaining a leaner and more flexible IT infrastructure that can be managed entirely in-house.

Editors’ Prize: The Icahn School of Medicine at Mt. Sinai with Ayasdi

Rethinking Type 2 Diabetes Through Topological Analysis

In analyzing medical records and genetic data on over 11,000 patients with Type 2 Diabetes, Mt. Sinai used Ayasdi’s insight discovery platform, which draws correlations between diverse data points through topological analysis. By clustering cases together based on features shared by specific cohorts, Mt. Sinai arrived at a novel hypothesis that Type 2 Diabetes should be treated as three separate conditions with distinct contributing factors. This analysis suggests a precision medicine approach may be beneficial for treating Type 2 Diabetes.

Honorable Mentions

TrialNetworks’ clinical trial optimization system is a cloud-based platform brings everyone together—sponsors, sites, CROs and vendors—to speed the development and delivery of new drugs and therapies to patients. The platform features a unified suite of collaborative trial management apps and intuitive site tools to optimize key aspects of a trial: startup; enrollment; trial conduct; and closeout.

AstraZeneca’s Canvas 3 application helps researchers search for and collate information from various databases to identify and make decisions on a compound including corporate compound collections, Scifinder, TRCortellis, e-Lab notebooks, Pubmed, ACD, eMolecules, ChEBI, and Chemspider. Given any compound or drug name, structure or corporate ID, Canvas rapidly searches in-house and external data to answer these questions and others: Is the compound’s structure known? Is there a sample in the corporate collection? Is it commercially available? Is the compound proprietary, published in the literature, queued for synthesis or novel? Is it a drug, a controlled substance or under a corporate restriction? What are its physical properties? How might it be named in a patent? What biological data is available?

For reprints and/or copyright permission, please contact Terry Manning, 781.972.1349.