C-DAC takes a giant leap

Pranita Roy
Saturday, 6 January 2018

“However, here, doctors lack in research and analysis, hence it is creating a gap and utilisation of these tools is hindered. There is a need to raise awareness about these tools so that they can use them in real life instances,” said Joshi. 

PUNE: The Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC) has developed two analytical tools, namely GAMUT, a genomics big data management tool and LAMBDA, a biological big data analytics on a dashboard, which will be launched during a symposium on ‘Accelerating Biology- Digitising Life’. 

These tools will be useful for universities, hospitals and research laboratories for the advancement of research in the area of healthcare, agriculture, livestock and environment. GAMUT is a software that uses text-based, chromosome position-based and gene name-based options. It can be used for specific population types. In this case, eight populations of South Asian, African and European descents.

“Every organism has a genome, which may differ by a letter or so in each. Due to these variations in the genome, one can notice that one drug does not suit all. Hence, GAMUT will help in managing these genome variant data in individuals. For example, if a doctor treats a patient, who has similar genomes like one of his previous patient, he can use the same drug treatment on the current patient as the doctor is aware of the effects and consequences and can compare the condition because of the history available on the tool,” said Rajendra Joshi, Associate Director and HoD of high-performance computing (HPC): medical and bioinformatics applications.

“However, here, doctors lack in research and analysis, hence it is creating a gap and utilisation of these tools is hindered. There is a need to raise awareness about these tools so that they can use them in real life instances,” said Joshi. 

This technology can be applied to cancer research. Currently, C-DAC is also working on breast cancer, along with the National Cancer Institute (NCI) headquartered in the USA. Similarly, its application can be further experimented on tuberculosis. Moreover, focusing on animal health, its application can be used in finding chicken genomes (poultry sector).

While LAMBDA is a structural analytics package of large molecules. As an interpretation of huge structural data obtained from molecular dynamics simulation studies proves to be very crucial in understanding the properties of biomolecules useful in drug discovery and other biological functions. LAMBDA provides indigenously developed algorithm.

“Our aim is to bring supercomputing technology impact on the common man. There is a tremendous amount of data following. Analytics will be helpful in managing data. The field of genomics is experiencing a paradigm shift. Developments in coming years will accelerate the use of technologies like HPC solutions across the industry. GAMUT and LAMBDA will be helping tools for drug discovery,” said Hemant Darbari, Director General of C-DAC.

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