BOSTON, MA, August 22, 2011 – The Pistoia Alliance, a precompetitive alliance of life science companies, technology vendors, publishers, and academic groups, announced today that it had launched the second phase of its sequence services project and issued a request for proposal (RFP) for software pilots. The effort expands on a successful first phase of the project that demonstrated the feasibility of providing secure, cloud-based access to public and private sources of gene sequencing data.
Sequence Services Phase 2 pilots the functional requirements developed in Phase 1 to specific use cases involving the storage and analysis of next-generation sequencing data. Representatives from several leading pharmaceutical companies collaborated to develop an RFP for pilot systems that would manage and analyze gene sequencing data as a hosted software service. Life science technology vendors interested in commercializing cloud-based sequence services are invited to view the RFP on the Pistoia Alliance website and submit proposals by September 23, 2011.
“Pharmaceutical companies are set apart not by how we collect and manage sequencing data, but on how we interpret and act on that data,” said Nick Lynch, president of the Pistoia Alliance. “It makes no sense for each of us to research and develop our own, individual methods for pulling together public and private sources of gene sequencing data. Precompetitive collaboration in groups like Pistoia enables us to better articulate broad information management problems like those associated with sequence services and more effectively influence the bioinformatics solutions vendors develop.”
Four vendor proof-of-concept systems were developed during Phase 1, which were ethically hacked by AT&T and fully evaluated by Pistoia Alliance members. Phase 2 RFPs proposals may be eligible to receive shared risk funding; participating technology vendors will be notified in October if their proposal is eligible for funding. Phase 2 pilots will undergo security and functional testing in March 2012 and will be formally presented to Pistoia Alliance members at the group’s annual conference in April 2012.