MRC eMedLab and OCF Win at the UK Cloud Awards

Published on: 4th April 2017

Pictured (from left to right): Mahesh Pancholi, OCF; Borbala Mifsud, QMUL, MRC eMedLab Career Development Fellow; Richard Corrigan, OCF

MRC eMedLab, with OCF, has won an award at the UK Cloud Awards 2017 for the ‘Best Public Sector Project’ category.

The MRC-funded eMedLab research infrastructure is collaboration between Europe’s leading biomedical research institutions – University College London, Queen Mary University of London, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, the Francis Crick Institute, the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, the EMBL European Bioinformatics Institute and King’s College London. Its vision is to maximise the gains for patients and for medical research that will come from the explosion of human health data.

MRC eMedLab is a private cloud HPC and big data system which supports the efforts of over one hundred researchers from academia and industry, studying cancers, cardio-vascular and rare diseases, including 6 stratified medicine projects focusing on auto-immune diseases.

The eMedLab equipment is hosted in the Jisc Shared Datacentre in Slough

The HPC cloud environment combines a Red Hat Enterprise Linux OpenStack Platform with Lenovo Flex System hardware to enable the creation of virtual HPC clusters bespoke to individual researchers’ requirements. OCF also works closely with its partners Red Hat, Lenovo, Mellanox Technologies and in collaboration with MRC eMedlab’s research technologists.

Professor Nick Luscombe, Winton Senior Group Leader, The Francis Crick Institute and Chair in Computational Biology, UCL said: “Medical informatics should turn conventional clinical problem-solving on its head. Medicine usually identifies a problem then works backwards for understanding, and often, effective treatments are given without fully understanding the mechanism. Now with molecular datasets we can work forwards. It brings the two sides together—the molecular and the observational. This is taking advantage of these huge datasets that allow researchers to move beyond simple one-to-one correlations to multi-dimensional analysis incorporating many factors.”

Please get in touch if you would like to hear more about MRC eMedLab and how to access the resource.

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