Path2Cures speakers call for open data sharing

Originally posted on MedCity News

Breaking out of research silos and collaborating more openly will be a big step in driving personalized medicine forward, said Dr. Andrew Futreal, a professor of genomic medicine at MD Anderson.

Futreal was one of a dozen personal-medicine experts from the private, public and academic sectors who spoke at a Path2Cures hearing Wednesday in front of the House Energy and Commerce Committee.

It’s going to be an expensive proposition, after all, to tailor medications for each individual – so teamwork is key, the panel agreed.

“We’re sitting on a massive opportunity to do away with that single investigator-driven idea,” Futreal said. That’s what they’re doing, after all, at MD Anderson – exploring partnerships, and shedding the “homegrown” kind of research that’s typical of academia.

“Other groups… have recognized the benefits of sharing rather than keeping data private,” said Dr. Susanne Haga, an associate research professor at the Institute for Genome Sciences at Duke University. “The exchange of data will benefit all.”