Hangzhou, China, October 27, 2015 – AliCloud, Alibaba Group's (NYSE: BABA) cloud computing arm, Intel Corporation and BGI have announced the launch of Asia's first cloud platform focusing on precision medicine and its applications to accelerate the fledgling science of precision medicine in China. The strategic memorandum of cooperation was signed by the three companies at the 10th Annual Meeting of the International Conference on Genomics in Shenzhen last Friday.
This is China's first cross-disciplinary collaboration involving an IT vendor, a life sciences research institution as well as a public cloud service provider in the provision of a cloud-based precision medicine platform. Precision medicine aims to prevent and treat diseases through taking factors such as genetic makeup, environment and lifestyle into account in the development of medical treatments. The new cloud platform is expected to accelerate the advent of precision medicine, benefiting the medical, healthcare and wellness industries with new applications and research discoveries. As a result, the man in the street will enjoy more effective medical treatments and preventive healthcare services in the future.
Under the terms of the strategic memorandum of cooperation, Beijing-based BGI, the largest genomics research center in the world, will leverage its secure cloud-based BGI Online genome analytics engine to create a genomics data center and analytics platform that will promote the development of a vibrant precision medicine industry. AliCloud will provide a cloud computing environment, big data analytics, and a supporting ecosystem, while Alibaba Group affiliates including Alibaba Health, Ant Financial Services Group, Taobao Marketplace and Tmall.com will be responsible for services such as payment infrastructure, health management, and marketing support. Intel will offer computing support optimized for genetic research to enable the processing and analysis of genetic data in a secure, private environment.
Access to the precision medicine platform is open to all stakeholders and supporters of China's precision medicine industry. The flexibility of its cloud infrastructure has enabled the new medical platform not only to satisfy stringent conditions for medical research, but also for the storage and transmission of sensitive genetic data. The advanced technologies comply with HIPAA stipulations and other industry requirements, enabling doctors and researchers to share information in a highly secure environment.
Ye Yin, CEO, BGI Ltd said: "With AliCloud's support, our BGI Online has become the basis of an open, collaborative cloud environment that is a win for all parties. The new platform will attract more users and developers to BGI's solutions, drive continued innovation for medicine, and grow a strong precision medicine industry."
Intel Fellow Eric Dishman, who is also general manager, Health & Life Sciences at Intel said: "The creation of this converged precision healthcare platform with BGI and AliCloud is a rare opportunity for Intel not only to work with in-country experts but also to use IT to accelerate our understanding of gene sequencing and analytics. The end goal is to empower researchers and doctors to help patients receive a diagnosis based on their genome and potentially arm clinicians with the data needed for a targeted treatment plan. By 2020, we envision this happening in 24 hours – All in One Day.
AliCloud President Xiaoming Hu said, "The growing gene sequencing industry is fundamentally changing the nature of biomedical research and medical practice. At the same time, the explosive growth of complex data from the life sciences industry is bringing new challenges for computing, storage and big data analytics. AliCloud has the expertise and core systems capacity to support the world's largest genomics research center in a secure, private environment."
"We believe that BGI, AliCloud, and Intel are a powerful combination that will revolutionize gene sequencing technology. We will generate a number of positive outcomes for health, work together to publicize the power of computing, and bring incalculable value to society," Hu added.
Established in September 2009, AliCloud (www.alicloud.com), Alibaba Group's cloud computing division, develops highly scalable platforms for cloud computing and data management. It provides a comprehensive suite of cloud computing services to support the participants of Alibaba Group's online and mobile commerce ecosystem, including sellers, and other third-party customers and businesses. AliCloud is a business unit within Alibaba Group.