NantHealth, the health care technology division of billionaire Patrick Soon-Shiong’s Culver City holding company NantWorks, has revealed the first product of its collaboration with smartphone-maker BlackBerry: a secure clinical genome browser that gives doctors access to patients’ genetic data on the BlackBerry Passport smartphone.
The NantOmics Cancer Genome Browser would, for example, give oncologists a view into the individual genetic alternations that make each patient’s cancer unique and highlight relevant treatment options.
Powered by BlackBerry’s mobile security infrastructure, the browser is fully encrypted to allow deployment in a HIPAA-secured environment, enabling clinicians to securely access patient data as soon as it’s available.
In a statement accompanying the release, Soon-Shiong likened using the application to “placing a super-computer into the doctor’s hand at point of care and in time of need.”
“With BlackBerry’s partnership and through the power of the cloud and secure networks, the reality is we are now able to put dozens of supercomputers, through mobile devices, into doctor’s hands on a global basis,” he said.
BlackBerry, headquartered in Waterloo, Ontario, invested an undisclosed amount in NantHealth in April. The browser is the first in a series of projects being developed jointly by the two companies for health care professionals.
The browser will be preloaded on some BlackBerry Passport devices available to the professional community early next year.
Soon-Shiong, attending Forbes Health Care Summit last week, said he expected NantHealth to go public next year. In addition to the BlackBerry investment, NantHealth received $250 million earlier this year from the Kuwait Investment Authority. The sovereign wealth fund joined other previous investors including a subsidiary of Verizon Communications Inc. and biopharmaceutical giant Celgene Corp.
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