Healthgrid 2005 Proceedings dig into results, field test outcomes and prototype application strategies of Grids in health care

Amsterdam 21 April 2005The conference proceedings of the third edition of the annual "Healthgrid" event, held April 7-9, 2005 in Oxford, United Kingdom, have been published as the 112th volume in the series dedicated to Studies in Health Technology and Informatics by IOS Press in Amsterdam. This Healthgrid 2005 edition includes 22 papers divided into four categories: Knowledge and Data Management; Deployment of Grids in Health; Current Projects; and Ethical, Legal, Social and Security Issues. The Proceedings titled "From Grid to Healthgrid" also contain the Healthgrid White Paper which has been drawn up by over fifty experts in the areas of Grid technologies and eHealth applications after the second Healthgrid Conference that was held in Clermont-Ferrand, France in January 2004.


The emergence and use of Grids in the health care area can be approached from different angles. "From Grid to Healthgrid" offers a broad yet detailed overview of the issues and of the activities currently being deployed in this domain, especially in Europe. Five papers focus on the introduction of new technologies to organise, structure, describe, analyse, and mine the enormous amounts of data circulating in a Healthgrid. These technologies pay particular good services in the bioinformatics research field including the analysis of gene functions, protein structure prediction, and proteomics experiment modelling.

In addition to bioinformatics research, Grids are also applied in collaborative medical imaging, distributed radiological visualization, clinical decision support systems, biosensor networks, and preventive disease management. Projects that have been launched in these areas are MammoGrid, Body Area Network or BAN which is being integrated in a Grid infrastructure, and the United States Biomedical Informatics Research Network or BIRN. The Healthgrid 2005 Proceedings provide an overview of their current status in the second part.

More projects are presented by the studies in part three. ProGenGrid is a Proteomics and Genomics Grid system for bioinformatical research set up at the University of Lecce, Italy. The Virtual Laboratory for e-Science (VL-e) is a Dutch project at the University of Amsterdam in which Grid architecture forms a major help to optimize brain, bowel and heart imaging through delivery of enhanced computational power. Brain function analysis is being performed in an English project using Condor and Matlab for Electrical Impedance Tomography. Dutch and Spanish researchers are analysing cardiac MR images after optimal value assessment in a Monte Carlo procedure using computational Grid technology with a Grid desktop in The Netherlands and a computer cluster in Spain.

The Italian MAGIC-5 prototype system based on the AliEn GRID Services deals with pulmonary and mammographic Computer Aided Detection. The AliEn middleware will be migrated to the EGEE/gLite middleware which might become a European standard. At EPFL in Switzerland, the NEOBASE project has been set up to archive the neocortical microcircuit data in order to study the microcircuit basis of normal and abnormal neocortical function. In this project Grid computing is used for distributed data management.

The fourth part of the Healthgrid 2005 proceedings is dedicated to papers and projects addressing security, privacy and legal aspects in Grids. The ARTEMIS project provides a semantic Web service based P2P interoperability infrastructure for health care information systems. The European Union funded Grid Enabled Medical Simulation Services (GEMSS) project is developing secure and time-critical middleware for radiosurgery planning. The British e-Science project eDiaMoND for breast screening has encountered a lot of challenges with regard to requirements capture and ethical approval which are being described in a paper by Mark Hartswood et al.

The European Classification of Infertility (ECIT) case study deals with legal issues in order to manage clinical infertility information across Europe over the Grid. µgrid constitutes a light weight middleware for Grid applications in medical data management addressing access control to resources and the Sygn architecture focuses on the complex needs for authorization arising in Grid enabled medical applications: both are described in a study by French researchers. The final paper describes a linkable identity privacy algorithm to achieve traceable identity privacy to be used in health care-oriented Grids.

The Healthgrid 2005 proceedings include 19 European papers: 7 from the United Kingdom, 3 from Italy, 2 from Russia, 1 from Spain, 1 from Greece, 1 from The Netherlands, 1 from Switzerland, 1 from France, 1 Spanish-Dutch research and 1 Italo-Swiss-British research; 2 studies from the United States; and 1 from Japan.

  • From Grid to Healthgrid - Proceedings of Healthgrid 2005
  • Edited by Tony Solomonides, Richard McClatchey, Vincent Breton, Yannick Legré, and Sophie Nørager
  • Published by IOS Press - Amsterdam/Berlin/Oxford/Tokyo/Washington, DC
  • 2005 - 324 p.
  • ISBN 1 58603 510 X
  • Available from Paul Gijsbers at IOS Press - Nieuwe Hemweg 6B - 1013 BG Amsterdam - The Netherlands
  • Phone: +31-20-688-3355 - Fax: +31-20-620-3419 - E-mail:

Leslie Versweyveld

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