Objectives: To summarize excellent current research in the field of Bioinformatics and Translational Informatics with application in the health domain and clinical care.
Method: We provide a synopsis of the articles selected for the IMIA Yearbook 2015, from which we attempt to derive a synthetic overview of current and future activities in the field. As last year, a first step of selection was performed by querying MEDLINE with a list of MeSH descriptors completed by a list of terms adapted to the section. Each section editor has evaluated separately the set of 1,594 articles and the evaluation results were merged for retaining 15 articles for peer-review.
Results: The selection and evaluation process of this Yearbook's section on Bioinformatics and Translational Informatics yielded four excellent articles regarding data management and genome medicine that are mainly tool-based papers. In the first article, the authors present PPISURV a tool for uncovering the role of specific genes in cancer survival outcome. The second article describes the classifier PredictSNP which combines six performing tools for predicting disease-related mutations. In the third article, by presenting a high-coverage map of the human proteome using high resolution mass spectrometry, the authors highlight the need for using mass spectrometry to complement genome annotation. The fourth article is also related to patient survival and decision support. The authors present datamining methods of large-scale datasets of past transplants. The objective is to identify chances of survival.
Conclusions: The current research activities still attest the continuous convergence of Bioinformatics and Medical Informatics, with a focus this year on dedicated tools and methods to advance clinical care. Indeed, there is a need for powerful tools for managing and interpreting complex, large-scale genomic and biological datasets, but also a need for user-friendly tools developed for the clinicians in their daily practice. All the recent research and development efforts contribute to the challenge of impacting clinically the obtained results towards a personalized medicine.
Keywords: Medical informatics; biomedical research; clinical research; patient selection; phenotyping.