It's becoming more and more popular these days to back up your data to the cloud. Your iPhone does it. Your tablet does it. And one day, perhaps soon, your doctor could be able to send a backup of you to the cloud.
The concept sounds far fetched, but that's exactly what Amazon and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) are up to. The collaborative effort is called the 1000 Genomes Project, and has already compiled 1,700 human genomes — essentially, the recipe for making 1,700 different people. Previously, this kind of data was only available to researchers by mailing data disks back and forth. The Amazon initiative now makes all that data available to genetic researchers via the Amazon cloud.
Already, the project has amassed 200 terabytes worth of data on human DNA, and is on track to add another 100 terabytes' worth of data soon. Researchers believe that by having so much data on human genetics readily available, they'll be better able to home in on the role genes play on disease. According to Matt Wood, head of the project at Amazon, "This is the seed to create a tree of data."
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