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Opportunities at the Intersection of Bioinformatics and Health Informatics
A Case Study

Perry L. Miller MD, PhD
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/jamia.2000.0070431 431-438 First published online: 1 September 2000


This paper provides a “viewpoint discussion” based on a presentation made to the 2000 Symposium of the American College of Medical Informatics. It discusses potential opportunities for researchers in health informatics to become involved in the rapidly growing field of bioinformatics, using the activities of the Yale Center for Medical Informatics as a case study. One set of opportunities occurs where bioinformatics research itself intersects with the clinical world. Examples include the correlations between individual genetic variation with clinical risk factors, disease presentation, and differential response to treatment; and the implications of including genetic test results in the patient record, which raises clinical decision support issues as well as legal and ethical issues. A second set of opportunities occurs where bioinformatics research can benefit from the technologic expertise and approaches that informaticians have used extensively in the clinical arena. Examples include database organization and knowledge representation, data mining, and modeling and simulation. Microarray technology is discussed as a specific potential area for collaboration. Related questions concern how best to establish collaborations with bioscientists so that the interests and needs of both sets of researchers can be met in a synergistic fashion, and the most appropriate home for bioinformatics in an academic medical center.

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