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The Integrative Cancer Research Workspace is producing modular and interoperable tools and interfaces that provide for integration between biomedical informatics applications and data. This will ultimately enable translational and integrative research by providing for the integration of clinical and basic research data. The Workspace is developing a software-engineered, well-documented and validated biomedical informatics toolset for use throughout the research community.

Additional information is also found on the Molecular Analysis Knowledge Center site.

Open Development and Community Projects Speaker Series

ICR WS Teleconference Speakers

The Integrative Cancer Research (ICR) Workspace is hosting a series of speakers on various open development and community driven projects. While the applications may be of greatest interest to ICR, the conversations about success factors for these types of projects is of general interest to the caBIG community. Meeting minutes are posted below.

You are welcome to join us on the 2nd and 4th Wednesdays of each month from 2:00 – 4:00 pm ET. Teleconference information:
800-593-0616 passcode: 2927756.
Adobe connect:

  • June 22
    • BioPAX and GeneMANIA; Gary Bader, U. of Toronto
    • I SPY/ Transcend; Sarah Davis, UCSF
  • July 13
    • Protein Ontology; Cecilia Neomi Arighi, U. of Delaware
    • Data standards and the Cardiovascular DAM at Duke University; Sal Mungal, Duke University
  • July 27
    • SBML: Systems Biology Markup Language – Mike Hucka, California Institute of Technology
  • Aug 24
    • HL7 Clinical Genomics Working Group: Amnon Shabo, Head of the Healthcare and Life Sciences Standards Program, IBM
  • Sept 14
    • eagle-I consortium and their research resource discovery network for biomedical scientists: Carlo Torniai, Oregon Health and Science University
    • GMOD ( Generic Model Organism Database) project: Scott Cain, The Ontario Institute for Cancer Research
  • Sept 28
    • NCBO Organization and Outreach; Ray Fergerson - NCBO Project Director, Stanford University
  • Oct 12
    • GenomeSpace – Michael Reich, Broad Institute

Recent News

New Article: Informatics and Standards for Nanomedicine Technology

A recent focus article in “Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Nanomedicine and Nanobiotechnology,” explores nanotechnology and its impact on medicine and biomedical research, as well as the need for informatics standards in Nanomedicine.  To read more about how Nanotechnology has the potential to make medicine more personalized, predictive, and preemptive, click here.

*Nanotechnology Expert Dr. Stacey Harper Awarded $1.9 Million NIEHS Grant *

This new, five-year  grant will provide extended research support to allow Dr. Harper of Oregon State University to continue to develop one of the nation’s leading programs to test the safety of compounds created through nanotechnology. While Dr. Harper has many credits to her name and too many accomplishments to list here, we want to congratulate her on this latest achievement , and we look forward to continuing to work with Dr. Harper through the caBIG^®^ Nanotechnology Working Group. Please join us in congratulating Dr. Harper on this truly outstanding achievement and wish her continued success in her research endeavors.

Teleconference Materials

The meeting Date is hyperlinked to the notes and hyperlinks in the Executive Summary are for specific presentations


Executive Summary

[October 12, 2011 |^20111012_ICR_WS_Mtg_Notes.doc]

  • Sherri Decoronado spoke about the NCI Provocative Questions. This is a list of important but non-obvious questions that will stimulate the NCI’s research communities to use laboratory, clinical, and population sciences in especially effective and imaginative ways.
  • [Zhong Li|^ICR_WS_Meeting_2011_10_12 MATKC wiki.pptx] highlighted the new Molecular Analysis Tools Knowledge Center wiki which provides centralized, authoritative repository of knowledge, information, and web-based support to facilitate the deployment and ongoing development of caBIG® tools, standards, and infrastructure in the molecular analysis domain. Tools supported are caArray, caIntegrator, GenePattern and geWorkbench.
  • [Rashmi Srinivasa |^caArray4ICR_WS_Meeting_2011_10_12.pptx]provided an update on caArray, the array data management system.
  • Michael Reich presented GenomeSpace, a community space for creating and sharing genomic analysis tools (It is seeded with with six popular genomics tools (Cytoscape, Galaxy, GenePattern, Genomica, Integrative Genomics Viewer (IGV), and the UCSC Browser). Presentation is available on request

[September 28, 2011|^20110928_ICR_WS_Mtg_Notes.doc]

[Dr. Ray Fergerson |^2011 NCBO Organization and Outreach_508.pptx]is from the Stanford Center for Biomedical Informatics Research and is the NCBO Project Director. He is one of the developers of the Protégé OWL plugin. He spoke about the NCBO organization, outreach and factors for success.
Mukesh Sharma from Washington University at St. Louis is the IRWG Liaison to the HL7 Clinical Genomics Work Group (HL7 CG WG). He reported in on the HL7 CG WG F2F meeting held in the context of the HL7 meeting in San Diego.

[September 14, 2011|^20110914_ICR_WS_Mtg_Notes.doc]

[Carlo Torniai|^Torniai_eagle-i_508.pptx], an ontologist from Oregon Health and Science University, spoke on the eagle-I consortium and their research resource discovery network for biomedical scientists.
[Scott Cain|^caBIG GMOD talk_508.ppt], from The Ontario Institute for Cancer Research, presented the GMOD ( Generic Model Organism Database) project. GMOD is a collection of interoperable open source software tools for creating and managing genome-scale biological databases, including individual or web-accessible database creation, visualizing, annotation.
[Baris Suzek|^091411_CrowdSourcing_presentation_ICRWS_508.pptx] from Georgetown University reported on the recent meeting “Crowdsourcing: The Art and Science of Open Innovation”

[August 24, 2011, 2-4 PM Eastern|^20110824_ICR_WS_Mtg_Notes.doc]

Amnon Shabo spoke about the HL7 Clinical Gemonics Work Group -  From Healthcare to Research.
The presentation is available on request

[July 27, 2011, 2-4 PM Eastern |^20110713_ICR_WS_Mtg_Notes.doc]

Mike Hucka from Caltech spoke about SBML (Systems Biology Markup Language) as an open community standard initiative. SBML is a representation format, based on XML, for communicating and storing computational models of biological processes. Mike reviewed past, present and future directions for the community and provided lessons learned – what went right (involved actual stakeholders, addressed real needs -not perceived ones, transparent and inclusive process, etc.) and where there were challenges (testing, complexity creep, not formalizing processes sufficiently). Mike’s presentation is available on request   Mike had an action item to share information about success stories, and his response can be found in the meeting minutes.

[July 13, 2011, 2-4 PM Eastern |^20110713_ICR_WS_Mtg_Notes.doc]

[Cecilia Neomi Arighi|^PROICR_Arighi_2011.pdf] from U of Delaware presented on Protein Ontology.  (PRO) provides the ontological representation of proteins and protein complexes and shows the relationships between them. It encompasses three sub-ontologies: proteins based on evolutionary relatedness (ProEvo); protein forms produced from a given gene locus (ProForm); and protein-containing complexes (ProComp). There is a website with extensive browse and search capabilities and includes additional annotations using other ontologies like Pfam and GO.
[Sal Mungal|^2011-07-13_CardiovascularDAM_v0.05.pptx] of Duke University talked about his work on promoting interoperability through the creation of a cardiovascular domain analysis model. This will be a component of their initiative to streamline all data collection and analysis through integration of data, annotations and analytical tools. The cardiovascular DAM uses at

[June 22, 2011, 2-4 PM Eastern |^20110622_ICR_WS_Mtg_Notes-1.doc]

  • [Gary Bader|ICR:ICR Wiki Home Page^2011Jun22_caBIG_ICRcc.pptx] gave a presentation on BioPAX, a standard language that enables integration, exchange, visualization and analysis of biological pathway data. BioPAX underlies the integration of public database content in, which has a comprehensive directory of interaction and pathway databases as well as search, download and visualization tools (from Cytoscape). Dr. Bader also gave a demo of GeneMANIA, a tool to predict gene function, gene sets, pathway members, complexes etc. It draws data from Pathway Commons and uses a Cytoscape webservice for visualization. Pathway Commons and GeneMANIA (and Cytoscape) are built entirely on open source software.
  • Sarah Davis (presentation available on request spoke about the I-SPY 2 TRIAL. It is a breast cancer adaptive clinical trial which uses a different (neoadjuvant) approach allowing them to: determine new therapeutic efficacy on a much shorter time scale; use findings to assign patients to appropriate treatment arms of the trial. The need to integrate molecular and imaging data from consortium participants required a new bioinformatics infrastructure known as TRANSCEND which makes use of several caBIG tools.

June 8, 2011, 2-4 PM Eastern

[John Speakman|^Speakman_CTMS_Program_Status_Futures_20110608 Final_508.ppt], NCI CBIIT CPO kicked-off the workspace call with a caBIG Program Update. Mike Smoot, UCSD, is lead developer for Cytoscape. He provided an overview of the Cytoscape software platform for visualizing molecular interactions and pathways and integrating these with annotations and data. His talk also focused on the active Cytoscape community.
[Sunny Jansen |^Sunny_jansen_NBIA_mouseGBM_update_ICR_508.ppt]is a researcher at the Mouse Cancer Genetics Program on the Ft. Detrick campus in Maryland. She is doing a mouse GBM study using caBIG tools such as NBIA and caIntegrator with imaging, pre-clinical and genomic data. [|^RaviSlidesGalaxyConference508.pptx]
[Ravi Madduri |^RaviSlidesGalaxyConference508.pptx]from Argonne National Lab will provide an update on his work with Galaxy. He was recently in the Netherlands at the Galaxy users meeting and presented his work on highthroughput data and identity management in Galaxy.

May 25, 2011, 2-4 PM Eastern

Mark Bray from the Broad Institute gave a presentation on CellProfiler. It is a tool which integrates various algorithms. It is capable of extracting measurements for every individual cell in an image-based screen, ranging from standard assays (e.g., cell count, size, per-cell protein levels) as well as more complex morphological assays (e.g., cell/organelle shape or subcellular patterns of DNA or protein staining).
Judith Blake from the Jackson Laboratory discussed the Gene Ontology (GO). GO provides a standardized representation of gene and gene product attributes and is comprised of a controlled vocabulary, gene product annotation data and tools to access and process the data (GO Browser and OBO ontology editor). GO is maintained by the GO Consortium which is comprised of organism and protein databases and the biological research community.

May 11, 2011, 2-4 PM Eastern

  • Rashmi Srinivasa hosted a caArray Users Meeting. She discussed features of the upcoming 2.4.1 release and the plans for the following release.
  • Grace Stafford provided an update on The Jackson Laboratory caBIG Deployment Implementation. This included the impact of next generation sequencing technologies on the computational core tool needs and requirements emerging from new projects.
  • Ravi Madduri provided a demonstration of caBIG workflows run using the Galaxy platform.

April 27, 2011, 2-4 PM Eastern

The ICR workspace heard reports on the recent BioIT and AACR meetings from Mark Adams (BAH) and Jens Poschet (Sapient) respectively.
Jason Hipp of University of Michigan gave a presentation on the use of Laser Capture Microdissection in --omics research.

April 13, 2011, 2-4 PM Eastern

The ICR participants presented on their assigned projects.
Jim McCusker, caIntegrator Community Contribution of Code, discussed his implementation experience and future recommendations.
Dennis Thomas , Extending the Use of the NanoParticle Ontology, addressed challenges for using NPO with nano-TAB and caNanoLab NPO for data annotation, semantic integration of data, unambiguous interpretation and data sharing.
Mukesh Sharma , HL7 Clinical Genomics WG, discussed “Considering changing mission and charter to reflect changing technology” and “Mission to include bridging semantics between clinical and research domains.”
Nathan Baker reviewed the updates and future goals of the Nanotechnology Working Group.
Bob Freimuth , Information Representation Working Group, reviewed the activities and future recommendations for the period.

March 23, 2011, 2-4 PM Eastern

Alex Kanous from the DSIC Knowledge Center provided a presentation on the electronic Data Use Agreement tool. The tool may be used for generating DUAs for outgoing data based on a catalog of standardized, modular contract clauses, each of which corresponds to one of the E-DSSF’s sensitivity ratings.
Joshua Phillips and Ravi Madduri discussed the prototyping activities on workflows for caGrid 2.0. They described use cases and requirements for workflows, defining metadata needed for discovery, composition, and execution of workflows and their consideration of how best to use W3C technologies (e.g. RDF, SPARQL, SA-WSDL, inference). They also provided a demo of a workflow engine prototype based on SADI and Taverna.
Ken Quinn spoke about the Roswell Park deployment of caGrid technology and use of caB2B to do federated queries across disparate, decentralized heterogeneous databases and clinical systems to support non-interventional clinical research. He described the process and challenges including: gathering senior leadership support, understanding the myriad research databases, gaining technical expertise, lack of common vocabularies and the excellent collaboration and support provided by the caB2B knowledge center.

February 23, 2011, 2-4 PM Eastern

Anton Nekrutenko and Daniel Blankenberg and of The Pennsylvania State University gave a presentation on Galaxy, an open-source next generation sequence (NGS) analysis software system. It addresses the need to empower the scientists without access to extensive infrastructure to do the analysis. Galaxy is a free web service, and has a plethora of analysis tools and has workflow generation capabilities
Stacey Harper gave a briefing on nano-TAB, a general purpose framework that provides a standard means to communicate nanomaterial data and metadata. The needs the data exchange format addresses and an overview of the file structure were discussed.

February 14, 2011, 2-4 PM Eastern

caArray Users Meeting featured upcoming plugin architecture for support the addition of new parsers and data storage mechanisms.

January 26, 2011, 2-4 PM Eastern

Jenny Kelley, NCI Population Sciences, updated the community on caLIMS v2 new features. She also provided a thorough demonstration of the tool.
The details on the upcoming release of caB2B in March were presented by Baris Suzek of Georgetown University. The tool will assist Bioinformaticians and Researchers discover and collect data on the Grid.
Nano WG and LS SME WG each presented an overview and current goals to the community.

January 12, 2011, 2-4 PM Eastern

The ICR Workspace is hearing reports on activities for the last period.
Bob Freimuth discussed IRWG work on the LS DAM Updates and additions to the model will appear in the next release. Work on the portion of the model shared with HL7 Clinical Genomics Working Group is extending the generic assay core to include concepts for gene variation.
Dennis Thomas reported on the processes to integrate the NanoParticle Ontology into the NCI Metathesaurus. This expands NPO accessibility and brings more semantics into the NCImt.

Looking for older notes?  Access ICR Meeting Notes Archive  

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HL7 Clinical Genomics Work Group – From Research to Healthcare

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