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SDSC Partners with Melax Tech to Construct AI-assisted Application Using COVID-19 Data Sets

Published March 15, 2022

By Cynthia Dillon, SDSC Communications

Melax Tech, along with the San Diego Supercomputer Center at UC San Diego, announces the securing of a Phase I NIH SBIR contract focused on the development and enhancement of innovative user-focused informatic tools for use in basic and clinical research on infectious, immune and allergic diseases.

The Phase 1 contract, valued at $300,000, has been awarded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to develop a COVID-19 Dataset Knowledge Graph (COVID-DKG) to facilitate integrated analysis of heterogeneous COVID-19 data sets. The work is being done in partnership with the San Diego Supercomputer Center (SDSC), where researchers contribute experience gained in developing Knowledge Graphs by participating in the NSF Open Knowledge Network initiative, as well as other COVID-19 related projects.

Despite existing efforts making COVID-19 data sets available for research uses, the volume and the heterogeneity of COVID-19 data make it difficult for researchers to find, understand and reuse relevant data sets for their research purposes.

According to Jingcheng Du, director of Natural Language Processing (NLP) research at Melax Tech, when researchers want to conduct studies across domains, they often spend tremendous effort and time finding and learning about available data sources. “The COVID-DKG has built-in components that support semantic search, visualization and integrated online analysis on open COVID-19 data sets, thus facilitating research and development in combating the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Du.

Peter Rose, director of the Structural Bioinformatics Lab and lead for Bioinformatics and Biomedical Applications at SDSC, added, “Knowledge Graphs connect the dots by providing links among otherwise isolated COVID-19 data sets, enabling researchers to gain new insights. For example, a data set published by one journal may be joined with another data set in a different data repository to facilitate new types of analyses.”

About Melax Tech

Melax Tech’s award-winning flagship product CLAMP, the Clinical Language, Annotation, Modeling and Processing toolkit, was developed by a team with more than 25 years of award-winning clinical NLP experience. CLAMP enables recognition and automatic encoding of clinical information in narrative patient reports. Melax Tech was founded in 2017 and has more than 700 organizations using their technology today. More information about Melax Tech’s solutions is available on the company website.

About SDSC

Founded as one of the original National Science Foundation Supercomputer Centers in 1985, SDSC remains at the forefront of high-performance computing. It provides the research community with large-scale compute and data resources, research networking, software and computational and data science expertise. Today, SDSC’s efforts are also aimed at cyberinfrastructure and bringing together the power of machine learning, artificial intelligence and data analysis. With simulation and large-scale experiments, SDSC supports the multidisciplinary approach needed to address critical research and societal challenges – from astrophysics and Earth sciences to disease research and drug discovery. SDSC translates this innovation into practice through its collaborative partnerships across academia, industry and the public sector.