After two long years without conferences and without traveling to the US, we are happy that things are finally opening up again. The first physical conference in the US is the AACR (American Association for Cancer Research) Annual Meeting. We have been attending this meeting since 2016, when it was also taking place in New Orleans, and we have not missed a single edition since.
AACR is the best place for seeing all the new and exciting developments in oncology research, ranging from new ways to find interesting new targets and designing the best molecule to engage them to better ways of administering treatments. From novel assays to generate new or more accurate data to methods and algorithms to turn this data into knowledge and, ultimately, treatments.
At AACR, we get a chance to talk to the end-users of cBioPortal, both of the public instance at www.cbioportal.org and the many internal installations we have helped to set up over the past years. This is not only a lot of fun but also highly useful to better understand how people use the platform and to inform the future directions of development.
One development that we at The Hyve are particularly interested in is the rise of single-cell sequencing. The benefits of single-cell resolution are obvious in terms of zooming into the mechanisms that are at play within a single patient or tumor. A challenge is to combine data from multiple individuals to be able to run robust statistical analyses. We will need to correct for batch effects and biases between different studies without losing our precious biological signals of interest. We believe that the transparency and adaptability of open source software will be vital in achieving this.
The true highlight of the event though, is being able to talk to people in person again. People who have not seen each other in over two years, or never had the chance to meet in person even though they have been closely working together for over a year. We will, therefore, very much be looking forward to our next event, which will be in a few weeks: BioIT World in Boston! We hope to see you all there!