Cancer Research UK Edinburgh Centre

Links to the Farr and Usher Institutes

Informatics in cancer.

Strategic links with the Farr Institute, the new Usher Institute for Population Health Sciences and Informatics and the internationally renowned Edinburgh School of Informatics, strengthen the clinical data access by the CRUK Edinburgh Centre and ECMC.

Our collaborative work involves:

Delivering a new generation of cancer bioinformaticians

  • The CRUK Edinburgh Centre runs a CRUK-funded doctoral training programme in Cancer Informatics.
  • The Usher Institute and the School of Informatics have joint appointments for early career researchers (Chancellors Fellows).

Growing medical informatics in cancer

  • The Scottish Government's deputy Chief Medical Officer, who has been seconded to the Usher Institute, directs the Innovative Healthcare Delivery Programme (IHDP) in Scotland in close collaboration with the Farr Institute.
  • Dr Peter Hall, a medical oncologist, whose research interests are in health economics and in interrogating large clinical cancer data sets, works closely with the Usher Institute and the ECMC- IT team to explore the use of natural language processing (NLP) to parse electronic clinical data. This strand of research will eventually replace the current labour-intensive system of manual screening of notes and entry into clinical databases that provide the essential annotation to sample bio-banks. It will also enable routine genomic profiling of cancers at a Scottish level via the Scottish Genomes Partnership (SGP) and other cancer genomic profiling initiatives.