How Big Data Will Impact Biomedical Research

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Big data has made an incredible advancement in technology over the past couple of years. It has been proven to be effective with it’s ability to find and collect different types of data. Big data has not only helped to pilot the technology behind artificial traffic lights but has specifically shown an improvement in the medical world. Big data has been able to equip doctors with enough data about their patient’s medical history to provide improved beneficial care. Today we see big data playing a part in biomedical research. Three main ways that big data has impacted biomedical research include authorization, speedy results, and safer animal testing.

Authorization Becomes Seamless

Before any test can be run on a patient, both human and animal, the patient must be cleared for the test and surgery. Big data collects information, including previous test results and the patient’s medical records, to give doctors a complete history of past and future medical issues. With this knowledge, doctors can understand what tests they need to perform if any red flags should pop up. Big data provides doctors with all the information needed before the patient receives the needed surgery or test. Big data also allows the sharing of medical records. With the process of sharing and developing medical records made easier, the medicine industry will be able to continue to grow.

Speedy Results

With the use of big data, there is no need for a biomedical research team to wait around for the results of surgeries or tests. While waiting can lower the efficiency of medical teams, it can also cause stress on patients, leading to slower recovery times or major setbacks in the recovery process. Results are wanted as fast as possible and before big data, as fast as possible was a few days.

Now big data has the ability to provide biomedical research the access to sift through medical records and test results. Big data collects traits and medical histories from the patient and applies it to calculations of the surgery or test that is being run. When the doctors receive this information, they can determine if the patient can or cannot withstand that particular type of testing. Big data can also help doctors speed up results by alerting them of any medical issues or warnings before testing takes place.

Safer Animal Testing

Big data is known for helping in the medical field for humans but as technology is improving, these advancements can also be applied to animal patients. By incorporating big data into research projects, researchers now have the ability to analyze generated data from previous tests and add any changes needed. Once big data has evaluated any and all possible medical outcomes for that specific animal, tests can then be safely carried out without affecting the animal’s quality of life. Currently, manufacturers rely on big data to assist in the development of wearable technology that animals can be fitted with. This wearable technology will keep a closer and better watch on animal subjects before, after, and during tests.

There is a constant need for advancements in technology and a better understanding for the data it produces. With all the good that big data can accomplish, many worry about the safety of this information. Keeping this in mind, a program was created specifically for biomedical big data to help insure the security of patient and test subject identities. This program is known as Big Data to Knowledge (BD2K). BD2K protects patient identities as well as their private information. This program will also develop policies, standards and resources that big data users must follow to avoid the release of private data. In addition to these safety measures, BD2K will help enhance the training of computer engineers , bioinformaticians, and data scientists through PALS recertification and other methods.

Big data will continue generating data for different companies and industries. With the specific advancements in the medical industry, biomedical research is added to the long list of ways big data is helping to better our society. It is improving human health and now animal health, too. Big data was created to provide more accurate and accessible data for the research community, construct the tools needed to help enhance the utility of this data, help develop and improve data concepts, and provide next generation trained personnel.

Linda_GimmesonContributed by: Linda Gimmeson, a tech writer with a focus in big data, machine learning, & IoT. Linda discusses big data, emerging technologies, and how companies can get real value out of their data.



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