Dr Ben Kong – Oncologist and Clinical Trials Fellow
Dr Kong discussed how he is using Big Data and personalized medicine in the field of Oncology, to give better treatment to his patients at Westmead Cancer Care Centre. Oncology treatment and research is driven by cost and technologies. Cancer makes up an increasing proportion of the global R and D expenditure and also cancer treatments are the highest cost to the PBS. One cancer can have many subtypes – these are identified by analyzing genetic sequences – then treatment is given according the genetic sequences. There are many drugs for one cancer according the subtype.
Technology allows big data sets to be analyzed giving personalized treatment and hence improving health. The challenge is allowing healthcare specialists access to the right data. Data management. In clinical trials, datasets are international and massive, international standards for management need to be developed according tot Good Clinical Practice. There is a huge potential to improve healthcare if the challenges of managing the massive datasets can be addressed to allow specialists access to the relevant and accurate information. NIH in the US has a Precision Method Initiative which is building a comprehensive knowledge base of genomic information and treatments.