News in brief: MOD contract for PMC solution, openEHR in the Caribbean

CGI gets OLM’s ECLIPSE software platform for Glasgow City Council 

CGI, an IT and business consulting firm that provides services for Glasgow City Council, has invested in OLM’s ECLIPSE platform for Glasgow City’s Health and Social Care Partnership.

The software can provide a single view of ‘client’ or family information, giving healthcare workers the opportunity to view an integrated client record that covers case management, citizen engagement, financial information, and activity and reporting requirements, including the operation of self-directed support.

ECLIPSE fits with the Scottish Government’s Cloud First agenda and is also in line with the Scottish Digital Health and Care Strategy on Cloud.

Sharon Wearing, Chief Officer, Finance and Resources, Glasgow City Health and Social Care Partnership, said: “We look forward to working with CGI and OLM to implement ECLIPSE. A single cloud platform covering case management, citizen engagement, finance and commissioning will be more convenient and efficient. ECLIPSE will help deliver better services by improving our strategic response to service users. The platform supports our needs now and is adaptable for future requirements.”

UCL researchers use data to find links between genetics and age-related diseases

A team of researchers, including experts from University College London (UCL), has used human genetic and medical data from the UK Biobank to provide what the University says is the ‘first data-driven classification of multiple diseases’.

Published in Nature Aging, the team found that seemingly unrelated diseases that ‘typically begin at similar ages’ appear to have genetic similarities.

Researchers at UCL and the European Molecular Biology Laboratory’s European Bioinformatics Institute (EMBL-EBI) used data to investigate the ‘genetic associations of 116 diseases’ – such as cardiovascular and gastrointestinal diseases, anaemia, deep vein thrombosis, thyroid problems and depression. The diseases were then grouped based on age of onset to define the relationship between disease incidence and age, revealing genetic links that suggest they may share a common cause.

The data used came from blood, urine and saliva samples, as well as details about participants’ lifestyles and health.

Co-author Professor Linda Partridge of the UCL Institute of Health Ageing and Max Planck Institute for Biology of Ageing, said: “Advancing age is the main risk for major diseases, including cancer, dementia, and cardiovascular disease. Understanding the molecular links between the ageing process and age-related diseases could allow them to be targeted with drugs to improve late-life health.

“The striking finding from the study was that diseases with a similar age of onset were genetically more similar to each other than they were to diseases in the other three clusters.”

Co-lead researcher Professor Dame Janet Thornton, Director Emeritus of EMBL-EBI, added: “Having access to human health and genetic data made this study possible. We couldn’t have done anything like this without the UK Biobank. Many studies have used model organisms to look at ageing and disease but humans are so much more complicated. If you really want to know about human ageing you need access to human data.”