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Professional Development, Training and Education

ISCBintel and Achievements

ASHG/IGES/ISCB Joint Symposium: Working with Big Data in the Cloud--Research and Privacy

 Links in this page: Register for Symposium and Meeting | Call for Abstracts | Join ISCB | ISCB Speakers


In collaboration with ASHG and IGES, ISCB is pleased to present a joint symposium at the ASHG annual meeting focused on big data in the cloud. Numerous large scale human genome research projects (e.g. UK Biobank, International Human Epigenome Consortium, 100,000 Genomes, AstraZeneca 2M Genomes, NIH All of Us) have been launched, producing considerable amounts of personal genome data for analysis. These make use of omics technologies including whole-genome and whole-exome sequencing, transcriptome sequencing, and epigenome sequencing.

The scale of these datasets requires use of cloud-computing resources to either store or analyze (or both) the vast amounts of data. Importantly, the shift to cloud-computing moves the personal data and analysis to an environment outside of personal/research lab control, thus necessitating an understanding of the legal and ethical obligations in maintaining data privacy, and experience in architecting and operating in cloud-compute environments to ensure human genome data is secure yet accessible by those with permissions.

This session presents an opportunity for the three communities (ASHG/IGES/ISCB) to come together to learn and discuss the legal and ethical frameworks governing personal genome data, particularly in the cloud-computing environment, and to share best practices for operating securely in this environment while still facilitating research. Practical applications to current big genome data projects will be presented and the session will close with a dynamic panel discussion with all speakers.

1:00 pm Introduction/Overview  
1:05 pm Implications of the Fourth (aka: Data Driven) Paradigm Philip E. Bourne, University of Virginia
1:35 pm International ELSI: "Free Trade" in the Cloud? Bartha M. Knoppers, McGill University
2:05 pm Infrastructure for Analyzing and Disseminating Large-Scale Genetic Data for Type 2 Diabetes and Other Complex Diseases Jason Flannick, BostonChildren's Hospital, Broad Institute
2:35 pm Break  
2:50 pm Reasearch Using Big Data Christina Yung, Ontario institute for Cancer Research
3:20 pm Panel Discussion  
4:00 pm End  


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Register for Symposium and Meeting

To participate in the symposium, you will need to be a registrant of the conference.  ASHG offers one day registrations, as well as full conference registrations.  Registration via the ASHG Website.

  • ISCB members can register as a nonmember at the ASHG member rate. A special code will need to be provided by the ASHG office so please include language that they must contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to obtain the code.  The ticket for the symposium is $15.
  • The member rate is $440 for the full meeting. To register for one day it is $395. At this time, no student rates are coded for the symposium.
  • It is not possible to register for the symposium and not register for the meeting.

If you plan to attend the full conference, here are some other sessions that may be of interest:

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Call for Abstracts

ASHG is an open call for abstracts.  If you would like to be considered the deadline is June 7, 2018.  The call for abstracts features  Omics Technologies and Bioinformatics and Computational Approaches categories.

Late-Breaking Abstracts

The Late-Breaking Session is a special plenary session developed by the Program Committee to highlight the most exciting research completed after the June abstract deadline. The call will be issued in mid-August and may focus on a particular emerging topic in human genetics, which will be determined after programming regular abstracts. At that time, more information about submission will be available. Abstracts not chosen for this plenary session will not be programmed in any way, including as other oral presentations or as posters.

The ASHG 2018 Program Committee reserves the right to not schedule this session if there are not enough excellent abstracts to program. Abstracts are chosen for both immediacy and quality, and should be as meritorious as other plenary abstracts. Recent statistics:

  • 2017: 61 submitted, 1 accepted
  • 2016: 59 submitted, 3 accepted

Questions: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit http://www.ashg.org/2018meeting/pages/abstracts_late.shtml 

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If you're not already a member, Click here to join the ISCB!

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ISCB Speakers

Presenting in the session on Technical Approaches and Guidelines for Protecting Privacy of Genetic Data:
Secure genome crowdsourcing for million-individual association studies. Bonnie Berger. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA

You can see the whole schedule by clicking here.  Be sure to check back as it may be subject to change.

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Exclusively for members

  • Member Discount

    ISCB Members enjoy discounts on conference registration (up to $150), journal subscriptions, book (25% off), and job center postings (free).

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    Connecting, Collaborating, Training, the Lifeblood of Science. ISCB, the professional society for computational biology!


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