Semantics in Healthcare and Life Sciences

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Semantics throughout the entire Healthcare Research and Delivery System

With the digitalization of medical and health information, from research knowledge databases through to patient care and records, semantics will play an increasingly important role in the information systems supporting human health.  Indeed, life sciences and bioinformatics is clearly one of the most advanced application areas for semantic technology, and one which other industries are taking example from.

For researchers, with so much data  pouring in, semantics provide an efficient way to process, interpret, represent, and access that data.  At SemTech 2010, you’ll see examples of how researchers are using the full scope of semantic potential – make knowledge connections between disparate sources, identifying and discovering patterns, and visualizing information relationships they weren’t previously aware of.  

Healthcare professionals will learn about the current and future applications of semantics that will reduce costs and increase the effectiveness of healthcare delivery. Examples include the advances in integrated medical records, the implementation of semantics in ‘horizon scanning’ as demonstrated by the United Kingdon’s National Health Service; and the ways in which healthcare organizations are currently using semantic tools to improve internal accounting and budgeting, and help eliminate error-prone manual processes.  You’ll also learn about the new applications in emergency response and disease surveillance systems that can quickly detect and successfully react to possible public health crises.

Application Areas Include:

  • Visualizing Linked Data for life sciences research
  • Collaborative knowledgebase development
  • Representation of Biomedical Terminologies with UMLS-SKOS
  • Enabling patients find clinical trails
  • Large scale reference ontologies, tools and applications: SNOMED, FMA and GO
  • Transforming Linked Open Data into Integrated Biomedical Knowledge
  • Semantics in emergency response
  • Semantic health records management 
  • Improved accounting and budgeting
  • Monitoring diseases and public health threats
  • How semantics can enable Health Care Reform


The Bioinformatics Organization, Inc. serves the scientific and educational needs of bioinformatic practitioners and the general public. We develop and maintain computational resources to facilitate world-wide communications and collaborations between people of all educational and professional levels. We provide and promote open access to the materials and methods required for, and derived from, research, development and education.


  • Cleveland Clinic
  • Merck
  • Biogen
  • Pfizer
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield
  • University of Texas
  • National Institutes of Health
  • Boehringer
  • UK National Health Service


07:30 AM – 08:20 AM
Semantic Technology and Healthcare Reform: How to Decrease the Cost of Healthcare with Semantic Technologies Bill L. Victoria, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas, Health Care Services Corp.
04:30 PM – 05:00 PM
Visual Analysis of the Web of Linked Data: The S*QL Plugin for Cytoscape Eric Neumann, Clinical Semantics Group
James McGurk, Daiichi Sankyo Pharma Development
07:30 AM – 08:20 AM
Orthopaedia – A Semantic Platform for Collaborative Knowledgebase Development in Orthopaedics Sanjiva Nath, zAgile Inc.
Christian Veillette, University of Toronto
09:45 AM – 03:30 PM
The Hospital Dilemma: Integrating Electronic Medical Records for Detection of H1N1 Outbreaks (Poster Session) Matthew M. Vagnoni, University of Texas at Houston, Health Science Center
02:00 PM – 03:00 PM
Applications of Biomedical Ontologies and Resources M. Scott Marshall, Leiden University Medical Center
Mark Musen, Stanford University
Jeffrey Grethe, Center for Research in Biological Systems, University of California, San Diego
  Using Semantics to Build a Scouting Knowledgebase Michael McGlashen, Merck & Co., Inc.
03:30 PM – 04:30 PM
Knowledge Sharing Using Semantic Technologies Vijay Bulusu , Pfizer Inc
04:45 PM – 05:45 PM
A Semantic Search, Semantic Clustering and Semantic Knowledge Base Engine for Health Information Tamas Doszkocs, National Library of Medicine
08:30 AM – 09:30 AM
Monitoring Healthcare Innovation: A Case Study in Using OWL, Linked Data and RDFa Mark Birbeck, Backplane Ltd.
Michael Wilkinson, National Innovation Centre, NHS
  Leveraging a Single Semantic Fabric to Drive Efficiencies from Accounting to Research and Everything in Between William Hayes, Biogen Idec
  UMLS-SKOS: A Semantic Web Framework for Representation of Biomedical Terminologies Using Simple Knowledge Organization System (SKOS) Parsa Mirhaji, University of Texas-Houston
09:45 AM – 10:45 AM
Semantic Health Solutions for Clinical Trials and Real-time Public Health Monitoring Matthew M. Vagnoni, University of Texas at Houston, Health Science Center
Ram Vedam, University of Texas at Houston – Health Science Center
Karthik Gomadam, Applied Informatics Inc.
Chintan Patel, Applied Informatics Inc.
Vivek Gard, Applied Informatics Inc
11:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Meaningful Use of Electronic Medical Records through Semantic Technologies: The Cleveland Clinic Experience Chris Pierce, Cleveland Clinic
David Booth, Cleveland Clinic
Chris Deaton, Cycorp, Inc.