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Thomas Duryea secures contract with MCRI

IT infrastructure solutions provider, Thomas Duryea, has secured a contract with Australian child health research institute, Murdoch Childrens' Research Institute (MCRI), to design and deploy a new storage infrastructure platform.

The platform aims to support Big Data analysis required to roll out next generation DNA sequencing technology.

The storage contract, which Thomas Duryea secured through its partnership with EMC, will see the IT integrator firstly extend MCRI's current 117 terabyte storage capacity to support existing needs and then build the storage infrastructure platform to support the roll out of Next Generation DNA Sequencing. The new infrastructure will be built using EMC Isilon - a storage platform specifically developed for Big Data.

Thomas Duryea CEO, Andrew Thomas, said EMC Isilon scale out storage is one of the benchmark solutions for such projects as it delivers the best balance of performance, scalability and ease of use, while minimising cost over time.

"With storage capacity starting at around 97 terabytes, the platform can scale up to 15 peta bytes which is why it is the storage platform of choice for other medical research centres around the world, such as Harvard Medical Research," he said.

According to MCRI, the partnership will enable its researchers, for the first time, to sequence the entire human genome and analyse Big Data sets, potentially providing patients with more affordable, comprehensive diagnostic testing that can guide optimal pharmacological treatments.

"Data storage and how medical facilities such as ours can best utilise Big Data to benefit patients is a major challenge. For every patient tested using the Next Generation DNA Sequencing up to three billion bits of genome data is produced which places significant demands on storage infrastructure," MCRI associate director, Professor Andrew Sinclair, said.

Professor Sinclair estimated that when the new platform goes live in a few months, MCRI will be able grow the number of patients currently being tested using Next Generation DNA Sequencing from 60 to more than 1000 per year.

"Children's health will be one of the first to benefit from the roll out, allowing for the early detection and diagnosis of genetic childhood conditions. However, I believe that genomic sequencing of patients will impact on all branches of medicine in the near future," he added.


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