WuXi NextCODE, Google Cloud Launch Genomics Partnership

March 7, 2018
WuXi NextCODE, Google Cloud Launch Genomics Partnership
Google Cloud plans to host WuXi NextCODE’s core suite of capabilities and make them available through the Google Cloud Launcher marketplace. [WuXi NextCODE]

WuXi NextCODE said today it will partner with Google Cloudwith the goal of delivering comprehensive genomics capabilities to partners and customers worldwide, through a collaboration whose value was not disclosed.

Google Cloud plans to host WuXi NextCODE’s core suite of capabilities and make them available through the Google Cloud Launcher marketplace. Among those are the Genomically Ordered Relational database (GORdb) designed for large quantities of genomic data; WuXi NextCODE secondary analysis, the Sequence Miner case-control research application, and the Clinical Sequence Analyzer clinical interpretation system. 

WuXi NextCODE said its platform will integrate and co-deploy key Google genomics and research tools—including the BigQuery serverless enterprise data warehouse; the DeepVariant secondary analysis pipeline; and other open-source analysis pipelines and tools available through Google Cloud Platform.

DeepVariant is a deep-learning technology designed to call genetic variants from next-generation sequencing data, using deep neural networks. Launched in December 2017, DeepVariant applies the Inception TensorFlow framework, originally developed to perform image classification. The framework represents information as images similar to what a clinician would look at from a genome browser, then classifies the positions as variant or non-variant.

WuXi NextCODE and Google plan to launch the first phase of their combined offering at the BioIT World Conference & Expo, to be held in Boston May 15-17, 2018. The partnership was announced at the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) annual meeting, being held through Friday in Las Vegas.

"Our collaboration aims to create a powerful interoperable suite of capabilities to derive insight from sequence data," Jonathan Sheffi, Product Manager, Genomics & Life Sciences at Google, said in a statement.

Added Hannes Smarason, CEO of WuXi NextCODE: "This partnership is an important step towards realizing our vision to provide people and organizations with the best tools for using genomic data, anywhere and at any scale.

"We are excited to see our platform launch on Google Cloud this spring, and to explore collaborative projects that require the combined horsepower of our own and Google's tools and teams,” Smarason added.

WuXi NextCODE’s platform is designed to enable its partners to correlate genome and phenotype data at scale and speed, in population genomics projects, clinical diagnostics and applications, as well as scientific wellness. The company says its capabilities span study design, sequencing, secondary analysis, storage, and interpretation and scalable analytics. WuXi NextCODE operates from offices in Shanghai; Cambridge, MA; and Reykjavik, Iceland.

In September, WuXi NextCODE completed a $240 million Series B financing, saying at the time it planned to use the proceeds toward further extending its platform infrastructure and further commercializing its consumer genomics-based healthcare solutions for the China market. 

Google Cloud Launcher marketplace offers more than 160 development stacks, solutions, and services optimized to run on Google Cloud Platform via one click deployment.