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The agency has launched a new web platform to foster scientific innovation.
As part of the Obama Administration’s Precision Medicine Initiative, FDA has launched its precisionFDA web platform, which the agency hopes will bring together industry, academia, government, and other parties to “foster innovation and develop the science behind a method of ‘reading’ DNA known as next-generation sequencing (or NGS)”, according to Taha A. Kass-Hout, MD, FDA’s chief health informatics officer and director of the Office of Health Informatics, and precisionFDA Project Manager Elaine Johanson. Kass-Hout and Johanson announced the launch in a Dec. 15, 2015 FDA Voice blog post.
The platform provides reference genomes and allows users to share their results, track changes, obtain feedback, and compare their results to previously validated reference results. FDA hopes that the collaborations developed by the precisionFDA platform will improve the quality and accuracy of genomic tests.
“precisionFDA leverages our experience establishing openFDA, an online community that provides easy access to our public datasets. Since its launch in 2014, openFDA has already resulted in many novel ways to use, integrate, and analyze FDA safety information. We’re confident that employing such a collaborative approach to DNA data will yield important advances in our understanding of this fast-growing scientific field, information that will ultimately be used to develop new diagnostics, treatments and even cures for patients,” said Johanson and Kass-Hout, in the blog post.