How do we build a robust data sharing and analysis ecosystem to drive innovation in cardiovascular research.

Richard Cooke2, Dr Adam Hill1, Hank Levsen2, Dr Chai Ng1, Prof Jamie Vandenberg1, Soren Wohlthat2

1Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute, Darlinghurst, Australia
2Telstra, Sydney, Australia


Australia is home to a number of leading medical research organisations generating large amounts of biomedical and clinical data that could better support health research if shared and utilised more effectively. However, in this increasingly data-intensive research environment, cultural, technical and policy barriers limit cross-organizational data sharing.


Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute and Telstra Health have partnered to create a national ecosystem for analysis and sharing of cardiovascular disease datasets using the Telstra Data Hub (TDH). The TDH, a partnership with Microsoft, leverages Azure services plus open source technologies like Comprehensive Knowledge Archive Network (CKAN) and Jupyter notebooks.  Our proof of concept focused on genomic and phenotypic data related to Long QT syndrome, one of the most common causes of sudden cardiac death in young people.


The pilot brought together a cross-disciplinary team to test and validate approaches for analysis and sharing of cardiovascular datasets including: i) Leveraging cloud-based platforms for hosting, managing, linking and analysing data across multiple organisations; ii) Streamlining mechanisms related to the data sharing governance; and iii) Application of FAIR Principles to enhance the value of data.


As part of the showcase, we will present our technological solutions, outcomes and lessons learnt from the pilot that have broad applicability to datasets related to any number of diseases or healthcare applications. Our ultimate goal is to encourage development of a national data sharing ecosystem to position Australia as a global leader in data-driven innovation in research and healthcare.


Adam Hill: Adam is head of the Computational Cardiology Research Group at Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute research. His research is focussed on understanding mechanisms of drug-induced and inherited arrhythmias and risk stratification for sudden cardiac death.

Richard Cooke: Richard is the commercial lead for the Telstra Data Hub, which is a cloud-based platform capability developed by Telstra to reduce the friction and cost of data sharing and collaboration.

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