Understanding the Bioinformatics Challenges of Integrating Genomics Into Healthcare

September 2018 | Sen, Arun

Genomic data is paving the way towards personalized healthcare. By unveiling genetic disease-contributing factors, genomic data can aid in the detection, diagnosis, and treatment of a wide range of complex diseases. Integrating genomic data into healthcare is riddled with a wide range of challenges spanning social, ethical, legal, educational, economic, and technical aspects. Bioinformatics is a core integration aspect presenting an overwhelming number of unaddressed challenges. In this paper we tackle the fundamental bioinformatics integration concerns including: genomic data generation, storage, representation, and utilization in conjunction with clinical data. We divide the bioinformatics challenges into a series of seven intertwined integration aspects spanning the areas of informatics, knowledge management, and communication. For each aspect, we provide a detailed discussion of the current research directions, outstanding challenges, and possible resolutions. This paper seeks to help narrow the gap between the genomic applications, which are being predominantly utilized in research settings, and the clinical adoption of these applications.



  • Ahmad Al Kawam
  • Aniruddha Datta
  • Nancy Dickey


IEEE Journal of Biomedical and Health Informatics

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