DTL Newsletter
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Newsletter - July 2016

Dear reader,

On 10 June 2016, 40 DTL partner representatives convened for the spring meeting of the DTL Partner Advisory Committee (PAC). The PAC is the formal advisory body of the DTL board. PAC meetings provide a great opportunity to bring our partners together and exchange on ‘stuff that matters’ in the realm of Data, Technologies and related Learning. For example, dr. Marijana Radonjic from EdgeLeap presented the results of the Agri&Food data handling survey that DTL recently performed in collaboration with TIFN. Respondents marked the lack of data standards and the difficulty integrating data from diverse sources as the main challenges ahead.

These are key issues in DTL, working towards a connected life science research infrastructure that encompasses valuable research resources. Research facilities, biobanks and data collections have been built up at many different locations, but are very hard to access in one go. This holds for the DTL-associated technology facilities, as well as for the landscape of facilities published recently by NWO on behalf of the permanent committee for large-scale research infrastructures.

Dispersal is one problem, but the fact that there is no common framework to access resources and combine facilities and data sources seriously hampers progress in science and innovation. DTL partners therefore strive to tune and connect their in house resources. Imagine the cool research that could be done in your field of interest if you could more easily access specialised experimental facilities of others and well-documented biomaterials, knowing that other peoples’ data would easily ‘talk’ to your data.

In the biomedical and health field the efforts to create a connected life science research infrastructure have materialised in a nation-wide Health Research Infrastructure initiative (Health-RI). Many DTL partners will have a stake in this initiative that is being spearheaded by BBMRI-NL, EATRIS-NL and ELIXIR-NL as Dutch nodes of European infrastructures with complementary programmes. We will soon present an animation movie to explain the approach. Please keep an eye on the DTL news page and tune in on the Health-RI meeting on 1 December in Amersfoort.

Interesting times ahead! Enjoy your summer!
Ruben Kok, Director of DTL

Please contact Ruben Kok if you want information on how to become a DTL partner or how to get involved in DTL initiatives.


First of its kind LERU Doctoral Summer School on Data Stewardship
From 10 to 15 July 2016, LERU, Leiden University and Leiden University Medical Center organised the 7th LERU Doctoral Summer School. DTL supported the event. The summer school’s theme was ‘Data Stewardship for Scientific Discovery and Innovation’. Read more.

How to create a respectable research data management plan
On 23 June 2016, DTL data programme manager Rob Hooft presented the webinar ‘Creating a good research data management plan’. The lecture was recorded and can be viewed on the Elsevier publishing campus. Read more.

Please take the national survey on research data management
Please provide your opinion in a national survey on Research Data Management (RDM). This survey is organised by the National Coordination Point Research Data Management (LCRDM), a national initiative in which many DTL partners participate. Read more.

Topsector LSH funds FAIR-dICT project to tackle challenges in data driven science

DTL-Data Projects was awarded funding from Topsector Life Sciences & Health to address scientific and technical hurdles on the path towards optimal use of scientific data for personalised health, disease prevention and care. Read more.

Status of ELIXIR following UK referendum on EU

DTL hosts the Dutch node of ELIXIR, which is the European research infrastructure for life science data and bioinformatics. As you will know, the UK last week voted to leave the EU. There will be NO direct implications of this decision on the operations of ELIXIR. Read more.

Chris Evelo new co-leader of ELIXIR Interoperability platform
Chris Evelo (Maastricht University) is the new co-leader of the ELIXIR Interoperability Platform, replacing Barend Mons. Chris will be leading the Interoperability Platform together with Helen Parkinson (EMBL-EBI) and Carole Goble (ELIXIR-UK). Read more

Please contact Rob Hooft if you have a question about the DTL Data programme or ELIXIR-NL.

DTL Community

Successful DTL Focus Meeting on FAIR developments
On 25 May 2016, thirty people gathered in Amsterdam for a DTL Focus Meeting on FAIR developments. “It was quite a fruitful meeting. There were many people that we had not met before and there was a lot of interaction between participants. And what is best: we agreed on a concrete follow-up step”, reports the organiser Luiz Bonino. Read more.

DTL programmers meetings evaluated
DTL organises programmers meetings five times a year, allowing scientific programmers from various life science domains to exchange experiences. Recently, DTL performed a survey to evaluate whether these meetings are appreciated in their current form and what we could change to improve them. Read more.

Bioinformatics Industrial Users Platform starts DTL interest group
The Bioinformatics Industrial Users Platform (BIUP) has decided to strengthen its interaction with DTL by starting a DTL interest group. Within the growing DTL Industry Platform, BIUP will focus on bioinformatics issues and act as a consultative group for DTL. BIUP will be supported by DTL with the organisation of events and communication around BIUP activities. Read more.

Please contact Femke Francissen if you have a question about the DTL community.

Upcoming courses, meetings and events

DTL Focus Meeting on data integration, standards and FAIR principles in proteomics: 29 August
On 29 August 2016, the next DTL Focus Meeting on data integration, standards and the FAIR principles in proteomics will be held in Utrecht. Participation is free of charge, but registration is required. Read more.

Illumina Whole Genome Sequencing Symposium: 1 September 2016
Together with the Hartwig Medical Foundation, Illumina invites you to attend a half-day symposium and networking event to discover the power of whole genome sequencing, including a lab tour of the HMF High-Throughput Genomics infrastructure. Read more.

Seminar on Oxford Nanopore Sequencing: 2 September
DTL partner BaseClear, together with KeyGene and Generade and with the support of Oxford Nanopore Technologies and ZF Screens, organises two seminars about the applications and challenges of Oxford Nanopore sequencing in the Life Science Industry. Read more.

ECCB 2016: 3-7 September
On 3-7 September 2016 the fifteenth edition of the European Conference on Computational Biology (ECCB) will take place. The preliminary programme is now available at the conference website. The deadline for early bird registration is 29 July and the deadline for submitting poster abstracts is 22 July. Read more.

BioSB/LUMC Advanced RNA-seq data analysis course: 26-28 September
Pre-registration is now open for the NGS Course: RNA-seq data analysis, 2016 (6th edition) taking place September 26-28, 2016, at Leiden University Medical Center, The Netherlands. Read more.

Python best-practises course: 5-7 October
Maurice Verheesen from DTL partner Data Computing explains: "Only 34% of scientists think that formal training in developing software is important. But researchers are bad at creating software. Therefore, Data Computing will launch a Python best-practices course in October 2016. Read more.

Health-RI meeting: 1 December
On Thursday 1 December DTL, ELIXIR-NL, BBMRI-NL, EATRIS-NL, FHI and FMS host a joint conference entitled 'Health-RI, Empowering Personalized Medicine and Health Research'. Registration for this event is open. Read more.

A complete list of upcoming courses and events is available on the DTL website.

Partner news

MyMicroZoo TM, which is a spin-off of DTL partner BaseClear, offers insight into intestinal complaints by mapping the residents of the intestines of its customers. Read more.

Dr Morris Swertz from DTL partner UMC Groningen has been awarded an NWO-VIDI grant to develop scalable big data methods for personalised genome diagnostics. Swertz is head of the Genomics Coordination Centre, which is a major data coordination hub in the Netherlands. He is also a member of the DTL scientific team. Read more.

On 30 May 2016 Royal Philips and DTL partner SURFsara announced a new collaboration with the aim to connect the Philips HealthSuite cloud platform to the SURFsara National Research Infrastructure to provide new cloud-based research services. Read more.

Wageningen University Research Centre has joined the partnership between the three universities of technology in the Netherlands (3TU.Federation). From now, it will be known as 4TU. Read more.

The EU has granted EUR 6.3 million to the project DD-DeCaF in which DTL partner DSM participates. DD-DeCaF's objective is to develop a computer tool that will allow biotech companies to design and engineer cell factories faster. Read more.

Start-up accelerator Rockstart (a collaborator of DTL partner Radboudumc) inivites participants for its Digital Health Accelerator programme. Registration is possible until August 14th. Rockstart targets digital health start-ups that are looking for funding for their ideas. Read more.

DTL partner The Hyve participates in RADAR-CNS. This recently started research project aims to develop new ways to monitor and treat brain disorders, in particular depression, multiple sclerosis (MS) and epilepsy. RADAR-CNS is an Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI) project with a 22 million euro budget. Read more.

On 21 June, seven new ‘Medical Delta professors’ were appointed at Leiden University, LUMC, Erasmus MC and TU Delft. So-called ‘Medical Delta professors’ are appointed at at least two of the five academic institutions that cooperate in the Medical Delta region. Read more.

Are you a young and ambitious researcher? Trying to solve challenging research questions in your domain? And do you have an innovative approach to use data-driven or compute-intensive methods in your research? Then you may win the Young eScientist Award 2016! Read more.

From 1 July 2016, on Pivot Park Screening Centre is a member of both the DTL platform and the DTL Partner Advisory Committee and will serve as a Technology Hotel in the DTL partnership. Read more.

If your organisation is a DTL Partner, you can announce your news and job vacancies on the DTL website. Please send your news items to Linda van den Berg and jobs to Femke Francissen.
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