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Social Innovation

Pioneering New Diagnostic Discoveries, Techniques and Treatments for Brain Injuries

Data-Driven Diagnosis and Treatment for Brain Injury & Disease Research Data-Driven Diagnosis and Treatment for Brain Injury & Disease Research

By Kerry Sims, Americas Vice President, Healthcare & Life Sciences, Hitachi Vantara

Historically, advances in healthcare have progressed slowly because so much research is conducted in isolation, and results may not become widely known for decades. But thanks to a unique collaboration between life sciences organizations and digital solution providers, all that is changing.

The key is cloud modernization, which is expanding healthcare organizations’ ability to use their data, offering an unprecedented level of insight into managing conditions and achieving optimal patient outcomes. This cloud adoption within the healthcare sector, along with data pipeline automation, has sparked a renaissance in diagnosing and treating patients.

A prime example is a nonprofit organization dedicated to biomedical research and technology. The organization has been instrumental in facilitating advances in brain injury and disease research through its launch of a publicly available, interactive platform that supports the exchange of information and ideas that further progress in neuroscience research.

Developed in collaboration with Hitachi and other partners, this platform is a trusted portal where clinical researchers, physicians, clinicians and organizations can collaborate on research and the validation of emerging therapeutics. It is the first cloud-based platform that uses big data to promote computational innovation discovery in brain diseases.

Merging human and artificial intelligence

Medical research data is becoming increasingly siloed, diverse and complex, while the sheer size of its datasets is rapidly outstripping the capabilities of existing systems. Molecular analyses, neuroimaging and sensor data generate petabyte-sized datasets, making data sharing and collaboration extremely costly and challenging.

The research organization understood from the outset that solving this challenge would require an IT infrastructure with the capacity to aggregate data across multiple studies housed in isolated silos. The platform would need to be scalable, capable of integrating diverse cohorts and investigators, and equipped with the high compute speed that is essential in machine learning and artificial intelligence applications.

Each of these capabilities would empower users to gain a more comprehensive understanding of signature patterns within existing and emerging large-scale datasets, and to pursue a higher caliber of collaboration across teams. This, in turn, would promote more efficient use of the research community’s collective knowledge of brain injuries and diseases, their accurate diagnosis, and treatments that deliver the greatest quality of life to patients.

As the project grew, the organization recognized that meeting these IT challenges would require the expertise of specialists in data pipeline automation and healthcare data solutions, including data management, data storage and data security tools that align with the requirements of the healthcare industry. Having heard of Hitachi’s work on an IT platform in support of heart health and cardiological medicine, the organization turned to us for help.

Cloud Modernization Solutions

A data solution that drives research results

The organization’s initial objective in collaborating with Hitachi was to upgrade the user interface and enhance the platform’s experience for researchers. However, it soon became clear that tight dependencies on the existing services restricted our team’s ability to implement requested changes.

The project scope was expanded to include migration to a more sophisticated and powerful infrastructure and architecture. The new objectives included building not only the portal used by researchers, but also the virtual analytical environment — the workspace in which analyses are run — and ensuring that data management within that environment was controlled and secure.

With experience across this spectrum, Hitachi was able to deliver an integrated solution that encompassed each component of the build-out. This streamlined project management and made the process more efficient.

Cloud-based Big Data Management

Cloud infrastructure that enables innovation

Cloud modernization is central to this story. While the organization began with a vision, advances in cloud-based data management, storage and security brought that to fruition. The platform is now operational, providing the healthcare sector with a new definition of best practice in tapping into the potency of data pipeline automation and utilization.

For Hitachi, this project has particular resonance because it is so closely aligned with our commitment to social innovation — bringing people and organizations together to the benefit of society as a whole. To have played a role in accelerating this process and in bringing life-changing drugs and therapies to patients more quickly is rewarding to us professionally and meaningful to us personally.

Learn more about Hitachi’s Cloud Managed Services.

Kerry Sims, Vice President, Americas Healthcare & Life Sciences, Hitachi Vantara

Kerry Sims
Americas Vice President, Healthcare & Life Sciences, Hitachi Vantara

Kerry Sims is Hitachi Vantara’s Vice President for Healthcare and Life Sciences in the Americas. Kerry has over 28 years of experience in advanced analytics, enabling and operationalizing data-driven insights for clients across industries. He’s held roles in solution innovation, global service delivery, partner development and sales. Kerry leads Hitachi Vantara’s strategic partnership with AWS for Amazon Health Lake with experience including real-time analytics and cloud-native machine learning for predictive and prescriptive applications at enterprise scale.