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Cancer researchers in NSW: A/Professor Daniel Catchpoole and team

The Sydney Children’s Hospitals Network’s Associate Professor Daniel Catchpoole is currently leading a project ultimately aimed at improving the health of children with rare diseases, in particular rare childhood cancers (such as childhood Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia (ALL), neuroblastoma and rhabdomyoscarcoma).


These bits of tissue are little packages of information and this information, through genomics technology, can now be extracted really quickly...

Associate Professor Daniel Catchpoole

Associate Professor Daniel Catchpoole and his team were recently awarded the ‘Big Data, Big Impact’ stage 1 grant for a project to enable clinicians to ‘make sense’ of complex biomedical data in order to deliver more precise and personalised case management plans at the bedside.

The team will take increasingly complex biomedical data and distil it in to ‘actionable knowledge’ to make it easier for clinicians to interpret in meaningful ways.

The aim is to increase their understanding of the biological factors that are both common to disease types and unique to the individual patients, using this information to inform better treatment options.

“These bits of tissue are little packages of information and this information, through genomics technology, can now be extracted really quickly, so we need to make sense of that large amount of information really quickly,” A/Prof Catchpoole said.

“If we’re talking about personalised medicine we need to start seeing patients as individuals and we need to consider them as individuals in the context of the crowd of patients that we are treating.

“The complexity of information that we extract, we should use to our advantage to start developing mining models and visualisation tools to be able to look at that data and learn how an individual patient relates to every other patient on the basis of their biology which is reflected by their genes.” 


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