The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and Mayo Clinic are collaborating to develop a new Center of Excellence for Big Data Computing, an effort that spun out of the CompGen initiative. The Illinois-Mayo Center, part of the National Institutes of Health Big Data to Knowledge (BD2K) initiative, will focus on the analytical challenges posed by the rapidly growing body of genomic and transcriptomic data produced by genome-wide, high-throughput experimental technologies.
The Center’s research goal is to create a revolutionary analytical tool that allows any biomedical researcher to place a gene-based data set in the context of “community knowledge,” the entire body of previously published gene-related data. This broad context for individual data sets will offer new functional insights for the genes being studied. The proposed Knowledge Engine for Genomics, or KnowEnG, will be unique in its integration of many disparate sources of gene data to increase its analytical power, as well as in its planned scalability—the tool will be designed to accommodate the continued growth of genomic community knowledge, and the increasing computational infrastructure required to work with genomic data.