Pursuing a Cancer Cure with Faster Data

Jul 24, 2017

PharmExec speaks to Bridgeworks CEO, David Trossell about the growing impact of data in the pharmaceutical and medical industries.


Increasingly, pharmaceutical companies and organizations conducting research to push cancer into history are realizing that the answer may lie in big data and in sharing it. To achieve this they need reliable network infrastructure that isn’t slowed down by the data and network latency. Even with the ever growing volumes of big data, it’s important to allow data to flow fast to permit accurate analysis.

On 27th April 2017, The Telegraphnewspaper wrote: “How data is helping to select the best new cancer treatments for patients”.  The article, sponsored by Cancer Research UK, revealed: “Gifts left in wills help Dr. Bissan Al-Azikani and her team to look at vast amounts of data, which can aid them in identifying the best new cancer treatments for patients”.


“To create value from big data there needs to be open dialogue, and the report emphasises that collaboration is key between all of the stakeholders – say, for example, in cancer research and the use of big data to find a cancer cure. But this will amount to nothing unless the right technology is put in place to ensure that data can flow freely and fast across a WAN.”

– David Trossell, CEO Bridgeworks, LTD


In S.A Mathieson’s ComputerWeekly article, “Genomics England exploits big data analytics to personalise cancer treatment”, Anthea Martin, Science Communications Manager at Cancer Research, explained that standard cancer treatments don’t work for everyone. This is because every individual and every cancer is different. She nevertheless argues that IT is central to testing and research —particularly as the high volumes of data present their own problems.

Writing for Wired magazine, Lola Dupre agreed. Her headline for her October 2016 article was “The Cure for Cancer is Data – Mountains of Data.”  She wrote: “With enough data, the theory goes, there is not a disease that isn’t druggable.” However, focusing on plunging into the depths of an individual’s DNA is not enough. She says this is because a cure for cancer requires a exabytes of data – a complete universe of it.


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