Big data, big challenges

Significant progress has been made in recent years in our understanding of what complex diseases, such as cancer, really are. This is related to the recently acquired ability to ‘read’ the complete human genome; a technology called sequencing.

As sequencing methods have become cheaper and more efficient, sequencing of DNA is skyrocketing.

However, efficient processing, analysis and sharing of this data, are still a major challenge. Also, the massive size and diversity of biomedical data are major issues to be dealt with. Distilling knowledge and information from big data in genomics has become a true challenge.

Three V’s of big data

In order to be able to analyze biomedical data swiftly and reliably, one has to master the key elements, the three V’s of big data in general:

  • Volume (size of data-storage and processing footprint)
  • Variety (diversity of the data)
  • Velocity (processing speed)