BlackBerry (BBRY) NantHealth App to be “World’s First Browser of Cancer Genome”

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blackberry passport

blackberry passport

BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) (TSE:BB)’s investment in health-care technology has produced an application that will allow patients and doctors to make more informed decisions in the fight against cancer.

Patrick Soon-Shiong of NantHealth on 60 minutes described the app as the “World’s First Browser of the cancer genome” and that using it they’ll be able to identify single letters that are mutated in cancer’s genome quickly. Soon-Shiong is hopeful that using the technology they could find custom treatments to deal with individual types of cancer in patients and identify why certain drugs work and certain don’t.

BlackBerry targeted Healthcare

John Chen targeted healthcare as a niche for BlackBerry in his turnaround of the company. He’s touted BlackBerry’s reputation for security and reliability in a field where data security and reliability can be life or death. The design of their BlackBerry passport with the 1 to 1 screen ratio targeted uses like viewing x-rays at the perfect uncompromised screen ratio.

In April, BlackBerry CEO John Chen announced an investment in and plan to collaborate with NantHealth to transform the delivery model of health-care to patients. NantHealth’s platform is installed at over 250 hospitals and connected more than 16,000 devices collecting more than 3 billion vital signs in a year. Blackberry’s strengths in security and reliability were touted as being crucial to the Internet of Things in Health. At the time of investment, Blackberry CEO John Chen said that “The future of BlackBerry lies in creative opportunities like this that take our many core disciplines and combine them in ways no one else can match,” and “Healthcare is one of the key industries in which we have unique advantages and this investment reflects our commitment to maximize our opportunities there.”

BlackBerry is in a midst of a turnaround. Known for turning around database maker Sybase, Inc, CEO John Chen was hired to turnaround BlackBerry and has cut inventory risk in its device business and pledged to raise Software Revenues to $500 million by the end of its Fiscal Year 2016. Chen in November said the company would be cash flow break even by the end of its current fiscal year 2015 which ends at the end of February.

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