Posts Tagged ‘pharmaceuticals’

Modern Science Must Be Open Science

3515348126_4315caf417Peter Murray-Rust of OpenSource.com recently wrote, “Open is about sharing and collaboration. It’s the idea that ‘we’ is more powerful, more rewarding and fulfilling than ‘I’. I can’t promise jobs, but I do know that openis becoming very big. Governments and funders are pushing the open agenda, even though academics are generally uninterested or seriously self-interested. Some governments and some companies recognize the value of teams; academia and academics generally don’t. The false values of impact factor and the false values of academic publishing mean that open access is a poor reflection of open, or what you may recognize as the open source way.” Read more

A Data-Centric Approach to Pharma Marketing

Matthew Weingarten of MMM-Online.com reports, “By applying a scientific approach, and taking advantage of technology that’s available, pharmaceutical marketers can boost the effectiveness of their marketing efforts and improve the return on their investment. Evidence-based approach shouldn’t be confined to the lab. Two current trends  push us toward enhanced rigor in marketing. First, the Internet has globalized the medical profession. Easily accessible medical databases put the latest research into the hands of doctors everywhere. As the profession has embraced social media, the network of influence has been completely remapped. The power of opinion leaders is now felt worldwide, through multiple channels.” Read more

Semantic Tech Turns Up Biomarkers And Phenotypes, Avoids Dead Ends And Higher Costs

Image Courtesy: ipharmd.net

Dr. Carlo Trugenberger, co-founder and Chief Scientific Officer at InfoCodex Semantic Technologies AG, has co-authored a report reflecting the topic he discussed at last fall’s London SemTech event: An approach to drug research that relies on identifying relevant biochemical information using the company’s autonomous self-organizing semantic engines to text mine large repositories of biomedical research papers.

The model, says Trugenberger, is a departure from many other semantically-engineered approaches to streamlining drug research, which are based on natural language processing (NLP). That’s good for extracting information from documents, he says, but not as adept at discovering knowledge. “That’s what our InfoCodex software is designed for, to find new facts and hidden correlations” in repositories of unstructured information.

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Clinical Studies And The Road To Linked Data

Clinical studies aren’t what they used to be. In the past, the process was one-off: You conducted a study, gathered a lot of data, analyzed it, wrote a report, and submitted it to the authorities. But, says long-time Linked Data advocate Kerstin Forsberg, an information architect at AstraZeneca, that’s all changed in the last few years.

“A study is not a study on its own,” says Forsberg. Today, the goal is  to do meta-analysis across many studies, so parties ranging from  pharmaceuticals companies to contract research organizations to government authorities all are ‘customers’ of clinical data, so to speak. Data from various studies must be shared among all these parties. “It puts a new context around clinical trial data, that it must be easy to link data together, to link across several different studies,” she says.

The case is there to use modern information standards, like semantic web standards and Linked Data principles, to address this need. It’s why Forsberg is one of the individuals spearheading a volunteer effort to create RDF and OWL representations of the standards published by the Clinical Data Interchange Standards Consortium (CDISC) an international, non-profit organization that develops and supports global data standards for medical research.

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Opening Up Pharma Data in the UK

Trevor Jackson, deputy editor of the BMJ (British Medical Journal), an international peer reviewed medical journal, recently discussed a number of open data initiatives currently underway in the United Kingdom. He begins, “One of the most popular videos on TED.com is a mini-lecture by the writer, doctor, and academic Ben Goldacre, called ‘What doctors don’t know about the drugs they prescribe’ (http://tinyurl.com/9y8chac).” Read more

Pfizer Moves Semantic Tech Forward, Helping Business Respond To Cost Pressures And Realize Efficiency Gains

A couple of years back, The Semantic Web Blog visited with Vijay Bulusu to gain some insight into how pharma giant Pfizer Inc. was moving forward with semantic technology (see article here). At last week’s Semantic Technology and Business Conference in New York City, Bulusu, director, informatics and innovation at Pfizer, provided additional perspective on the issue – first, during the presentation on Using Linked Semantic Data in Biomedical Research and Pharmaceuticals (see coverage of that here), and then in a follow-up conversation.

A struggle for pharma companies, Bulusu notes, sits in driving standards for data that exists across system silos, so it is broadly applicable across groups. A transaction like creating a batch of materials, doing analytical testing on it and enabling clinical trial releases is the work of multiple groups of people in departments like R&D entering data across different systems.

The foundational layer needed to support data aggregation in a persistent graph semantic database and visualization with collaborative, semantic knowledge maps “is all about data already in transactional, silo’d systems,” Bulusu says. “We want to make sure that across those systems, key data is entered consistently for entities.” That means limiting them to selecting via a drop-down list from a vocabulary that is consistently managed and published from a single source to all these transaction systems, so the same entity is called by the same name as it traverses systems to support analytics and other requirements. That, he says, “is where we directly impact the day-to-day operational work of users.”

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Pharma Becoming Ever-Bigger Fan of Semantic Technology

Courtesy: Flickr/epSos.de

At the Semantic Technology and Business Conference in New York City last week, attendees got to hear a lot about how semantic technology is influencing various sectors, such as government (see our stories here and here) and media (see this article and this one). Another prominent one on display: pharmaceuticals.

Pharma, for example, was the driving use case for the update to Callimachus that focuses on helping users deal with data that’s external to the framework for data-driven applications, David Wood, CTO of Callimachus project sponsor 3 Round Stones, told The Semantic Web Blog at the event. (To learn more about the update, see our story here.)

A session on Tuesday last week saw Lee Feigenbaum, vp of marketing at Cambridge Semantics, which makes the Anzo express and Anzo Enterprise solutions,  put forth a case for semantic tech as being key to data integration and interoperability in the sector, as well. “Can semantic web technologies break down enterprise data silos just as they break down document silos on the web?” he said. “The answer to the question is, “Of course.” Compared to the web, the data silo challenges of even the largest pharmaceuticals organization is relatively minor.”

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Healthline Partners with Drugs.com to Sell Semantic Advertising

Mark Walsh reports that Healthline Networks has made a deal with Drugs.com to sell targeted advertising on the site exclusively. Walsh writes, “The partnership expands the reach of Healthline’s HealthWeb to nearly 55 million unique monthly visitors, or roughly half the audience seeking health information online. Under the agreement, Healthline will sell direct response and brand advertising on behalf of Drugs.com, as well as create sponsored content areas on the site and enhance ad opportunities on Drugs.com’s mobile properties.” Read more

Semantelli Releases Solution to Keep Pharm on Facebook

Semantic start-up Semantelli has announced “the release of Facebook AETracker- a unique solution to help pharmaceutical companies maintain Facebook pages after the August 15th deadline imposed by the social networking giant. In May this year, Facebook announced it will enable public feedback and comments to encourage bidirectional dialogue on pages created by pharmaceutical companies, ending an exclusive privilege it had given pharma since facebook launched its business pages.” Read more