SANTA FE, N.M. -- The National Center for Genome Resources (NCGR) today announced an agreement with IBM to explore research and development collaborations in life sciences. The planned collaboration will bring together NCGR and IBM strengths and expertise in bioinformatics, high- performance computing, and data management, with the goal of advancing genomic research.
"Since the inception of the Human Genome Project, key organizations in New Mexico have participated in the development of information technologies and capabilities that will be essential for biomedical research," said Miguel Rios Jr., Ph.D., CEO and Chairman of the Board of NCGR. "We see our relationship with IBM as a natural and strong continuation of these efforts."
New Mexico has put considerable focus on research in such areas as highly infectious diseases and the nation's most dangerous pathogens, including the plague, anthrax, and the hanta-virus. The application of advanced information technologies is critical to this research because of the volume and complexity of data involved.
"Solutions to these challenges will involve the convergence of information technology and the biological sciences," said James Coffin, Ph.D., vice president of IBM Life Sciences. "Together, NCGR and IBM can deliver the critical technologies to help scientists transform massive amounts of genomic data into knowledge can be used to design new drugs that fight diseases more effectively."
NCGR has selected IBM to provide its future infrastructure technology. NCGR will use IBM servers, storage and data integration products to support its future bioinformatics program.
"As we looked at various computer companies to determine which ones we should be teaming with, IBM was clearly our first choice," said Dr. Geert Wenes, Director of Bioinformatics at NCGR. "It was critical to select a computer vendor who we could collaborate with and who would also understand our goals. IBM provides high-performance computing leadership, Linux clusters, storage and hierarchical data management, but also new and innovative technologies that are about to come out of its research labs."