News and Events

FactBio Launches Kusp Version 2
Upgraded platform now includes collaboration features and better tools
5 July 2017

Kusp logo FactBio, has launched Version 2 of Kusp (Knowledge Sharing Platform), its flagship product.

The improved platform boasts a number of new features, which have been developed in response to user feedback. These include a collaborative element and improved annotation rules.

A major new feature is the improved collaboration tool which allows users to share data they load into Kusp with other users or groups of users. Collaboration features allow sharing of BioBuckets between individuals and between groups of people along with setting permission levels such as 'viewer' or 'editor' of a BioBucket. Alongside this, there is a groups feature to group datasets together into related categories, which can then be shared with collaborators.

The improved annotation rules allow users to add context specific rules. This could include specific rules related to individual companies and organisations, and allow users to tailor matches to specific column headers. This includes partial matching, which allows users to accelerate auto-annotation, enabling individual cells to be matched based on parts of their values. This helps to cut through the noise often found with data to detect the value of interest, and accelerate the annotation process. In addition, Kusp now has stopwords, which enable users to tell Kusp to ignore specific values not intended to be annotated.

Finally, Kusp now has faster upload and downloads of data, which will improve annotation speeds. In addition, FactBio is now working to improve access to Kusp through an API.

Dr James Malone, CEO of FactBio said: "These new features have been developed in response to user feedback. As we expand the number of users for Kusp, we continue to develop the platform to ensure that Kusp becomes the 'go-to' platform for data annotation. In addition to the current improvements included in version 2, we have a series of new developments in the pipeline which will be announced later this year."


For further information, please contact:
Tony Stephenson
Chief Operating Officer, FactBio
T: 07899 796655
E: tony@factbio.com


FactBio Moves to New Offices and Expands Team

27 March 2017

Kusp logo FactBio, a developer of novel bioinformatics software with a focus on improving knowledge management and data sharing, has moved to new offices in Cambridge.

Alongside the move to the new offices in the Innovation Centre on the Cambridge Science Park, FactBio has hired additional staff to support the development of Kusp, its data curation and data discovery platform.

The move to the new offices follows a strong start to the year which has included securing a number of large pharmaceutical companies as clients.

Dr James Malone, CEO of FactBio said: "The new offices and additional staff will enable FactBio to expand. With a growing portfolio of clients and the on-going addition of new features to Kusp, we are now well placed for future growth. The user base of Kusp continues to extend and with the additional staff we will be able to accelerate development and improve the utility of the platform."

FactBio’s new address is: Innovation Centre, Unit 23, Cambridge Science Park, Milton Road, Cambridge, CB4 0EY.


For further information, please contact:
Tony Stephenson
Chief Operating Officer, FactBio
T: 07899 796655
E: tony@factbio.com


FactBio Secures Distribution Agreement with Filgen
5 January 2017

FactBio Bird Logo FactBio has secured a distribution agreement with Filgen, a Japanese based distributor of life sciences products.

The agreement will see Filgen granted exclusive distribution rights in the Japanese market for two years to sell the full range of FactBio products, including Kusp, FactBio’s novel data curation and data discovery platform. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Dr James Malone, CEO of FactBio said: "I am delighted to have secured this agreement with a leading distributor such as Filgen. They have built an excellent reputation in selling life sciences products and will be an excellent partner as we commercialise our products."

The deal with Filgen builds on the September 2016 launch of FactBio’s Kusp platform. In addition to this, the company has launched new products to support Kusp, including resource mapping and improved annotation features for Kusp.


For further information, please contact:
Tony Stephenson
Chief Operating Officer, FactBio
T: 07899 796655
E: tony@factbio.com


FactBio Announces Improvements to the Kusp Data Curation Platform
New features in Kusp 1.1 include resource mapping, and increased numbers of ontology classes, including plant
1 November 2016

Kusp logo FactBio, has launched Kusp 1.1, an update to its data curation platform which sees a number of new key features added.

The new features include a resource mapping module, improved search and annotation algorithms, an improved interface, and faster uploading of data. In addition, the range of ontology classes in Kusp has now been expanded to over 200,000.

The Kusp Resource Mapping module allows users to map reference entities, such as those in ontologies and biological databases, to other reference entities, enabling users to better integrate and interpret their data. Companies and organisations may use different or internal descriptions to describe their own data and by using the Kusp Resource Mapping module, they can connect and align all of their internal data with public data. Kusp now has over 300,000 resource and ontology mappings.

The user interface has also been improved, and users can now personalise their experience. This includes allowing users to specify which ontologies and databases they see when they search and annotate, an improved history function, which allows users to see their last five BioBuckets searched, and a feature which shows file upload progress.

Dr James Malone, CEO of FactBio said: "Kusp 1.1 has a number of significant improvements at the request of our users. Through our customer research, we identified a need for the ability to do ontology mapping, which will allow our users to better integrate their own internal annotations with external standardised ontologies. Through this, and a number of other additions, Kusp is now even better placed to support its users, and improve data standards globally."


For further information, please contact:
Tony Stephenson
Chief Operating Officer, FactBio
T: 07899 796655
E: tony@factbio.com


FactBio Announces Kusp Early Access Programme
KEAP will allow users to propose new features for Kusp
3 October 2016

Kusp logo FactBio, a developer of novel bioinformatics software with a focus on improving knowledge management and data sharing, has launched KEAP (Kusp Early Access Programme).

KEAP will allow early adopters of Kusp to work alongside FactBio developers to develop new functions which meet their emerging requirements. This will enable early adopters to have an important role in setting the future direction of Kusp, and to tailor the platform to their specific needs.

Early adopters of KEAP will have direct access to FactBio’s development team and will be able to propose new features and additions to the platform depending on their specific needs. This could include for example, adding new capacities to the API, supporting new import and export formats and developing new interface modes. Once the FactBio development team has the customer requirements the team will then prioritise them and work to add these to the platform.

Dr James Malone, CEO of FactBio said: "Curation of biomedical data using standards is a hugely valuable step, enabling reuse, sharing, and integration of a data set. Kusp aims to make the process of curation as simple and as rapid as possible. It improves accuracy whilst reducing the cost of what has traditionally been an expensive but important task. Given the volume of data now available, aligning towards community standards, such as in reference ontologies, in cost-effective ways is increasingly important for exploiting the data we have now and in the future."


For further information, please contact:
Tony Stephenson
Chief Operating Officer, FactBio
T: 07899 796655
E: tony@factbio.com


FactBio Launches First Product
New Platform Will Improve Data Curation and Data Discovery
12 September 2016

Kusp logo FactBio, a developer of novel bioinformatics software with a focus on improving knowledge management and data sharing, has launched its first product, Kusp (Knowledge Sharing Platform).

Kusp is a platform, developed specifically for the life sciences industry, which improves data curation and data discovery using community standards, to improve the use and integration of data. The platform allows users to simplify and accelerate data curation through automation, and the application of advanced data science techniques.

Kusp offers access to a range of reference ontologies and biomedical identifiers for rapid annotation of a user’s biological entities, with a high level of accuracy. The platform is also able to learn new patterns of annotation based on a user’s inputs, improving future performance by learning over time.

The platform can be configured for a range of users. For larger companies, the platform can be deployed behind a firewall, while single users and small to medium enterprises can use a secure cloud based service. Alongside this, Kusp has been designed to integrate with users data at the highest level to ensure data silos are avoided.

Dr James Malone, CEO of FactBio said: "Curation of biomedical data using standards is a hugely valuable step, enabling reuse, sharing, and integration of a data set. Kusp aims to make the process of curation as simple and as rapid as possible. It improves accuracy whilst reducing the cost of what has traditionally been an expensive but important task. Given the volume of data now available, aligning towards community standards, such as in reference ontologies, in cost-effective ways is increasingly important for exploiting the data we have now and in the future."


For further information, please contact:
Tony Stephenson
Chief Operating Officer, FactBio
T: 07899 796655
E: tony@factbio.com


New Research Provides Ten Rules for Selecting a Bio-ontology
16 February 2016

PLOS Computational Biology logo New research published in PLOS Computational Biology, has identified the top ten rules for selecting a bio-ontology.

The rules cover a range of issues including ensuring that the bio-ontology is about a specific domain of knowledge, it is current, it needs to be written by domain experts and it should be under active development. However, the authors also go on to add that in certain circumstances, a bio-ontology may not be needed at all.

The research which comes from scientists at FactBio, the University of Manchester and the European Bioinformatics Institute has identified a series of rules to allow researchers to better understand how to choose the correct bio-ontology. These include:

  • The ontology should be about a specific domain of knowledge
  • The ontology should reflect current understanding of biological systems
  • The ontology classes and relationships should persist
  • Classes should contain textual definitions
  • Textual definitions should be written for domain experts
  • The ontology should be developed by the community but not incapacitated by it
  • The ontology should be under active development
  • Previous versions should be available
  • Open data requires open ontologies
  • Sometimes an ontology is not needed at all

Dr James Malone, CEO of FactBio, and first author of the paper said: "Bio-ontologies represent an important tool for describing and sharing data. Selecting the most appropriate ontology can be a big challenge for researchers, especially those new to the area. We hope this set of rules, while not exhaustive, will help the scientist in deciding how to best choose a bio-ontology that is fit for their needs."

Professor Robert Stevens, from the University of Manchester, and co-author of the paper added: "The primary message of the paper is think about your requirements. There is a desire in the community to share and integrate data which highlights the value of using a bio-ontology. By using the rules described in the paper it is possible to identify if an ontology will be of use to a scientist and help bring some clarity to the frequently asked question of how one selects a bio-ontology."


For further information, please contact:
Tony Stephenson
Chief Operating Officer, FactBio
T: 07899 796655
E: tony@factbio.com


FactBio Joins Pistoia Alliance
22 January 2016

pistoia alliance logo FactBio, a developer of novel bioinformatics software with a focus on improving knowledge management and data sharing, has joined the Pistoia Alliance, a global organisation supporting life sciences R&D.

Dr James Malone, CEO of FactBio said: "The Pistoia Alliance has made excellent progress in supporting life sciences R&D and many of its projects are now having an impact globally. By joining the Pistoia Alliance, we hope to help in tackling some of the challenges faced by life sciences R&D."

FactBio was established in 2015 to develop novel bioinformatics software to improve life sciences research. In particular the company will focus on the development of Kusp (Knowledge Sharing Platform), a knowledge management system which will allow researchers to select a series of BioBuckets and use these to track entities of interest to them, and receive updates of new developments. The entities could include genes, pathways, proteins, or even people and publications as required. Kusp will also be fully integrated into social media, allowing researchers to share their discoveries with the global community.


For further information, please contact:
Tony Stephenson
Chief Operating Officer, FactBio
T: 07899 796655
E: tony@factbio.com


FactBio to Sponsor SWAT4LS International Conference
5 December 2015

SWAT4LS logo FactBio, a developer of novel bioinformatics software with a focus on improving knowledge management and data sharing, is sponsoring SWAT4LS 2015, an international conference on semantic web applications and tools for life sciences.

In addition to providing support in organising the conference, which is happening between the 7th and 10th December in Cambridge, FactBio will also be sponsoring a prize for the best poster at the conference, which will be presented on 9th December.

Dr James Malone, CEO of FactBio said: "We are very pleased to be able to sponsor SWAT4LS. The conference is now one of the main events for semantic web applications and very much supports the products we are now building at FactBio."


For further information, please contact:
Tony Stephenson
Chief Operating Officer, FactBio
T: 07899 796655
E: tony@factbio.com


New Bioinformatics Company Launched
FactBio To Develop New Products for Knowledge Management
2 December 2015

FactBio Bird Logo FactBio, a developer of novel bioinformatics software with a focus on improving knowledge management and data sharing, has been established.

FactBio has been established to develop novel bioinformatics software to improve life sciences research. In particular the company will focus on the development of Kusp (Knowledge Sharing Platform), a knowledge management system which will allow researchers to select a series of BioBuckets and use these to track entities of interest to them, and receive updates of new developments. The entities could include genes, pathways, proteins, or even people and publications as required. Kusp will also be fully integrated into social media, allowing researchers to share their discoveries with the global community.

Users of Kusp will be able to use a number of BioBuckets to track entities of interest for free, but for users who want to keep abreast of a wider range there will be an additional charge. Packages will also be available for enterprise users.

Alongside, Kusp, which will be launched in early 2016, FactBio has plans to develop a range of additional bioinformatics software products. In addition, FactBio is working with a number of life science companies on a consultancy basis and is running a series of training events for bioinformaticians.

Dr James Malone, CEO of FactBio said: "With the increasing amount of data now available to researchers, there is a need for new and improved ways to monitor an increasing range of interests. Through Kusp, researchers can automate keeping track of their many interests, whether they are individual genes, pathways, drugs, research papers or even people. In addition, FactBio will also be developing advanced analysis software, drawing on our machine learning background."

The company has been established by Dr James Malone, an experienced bioinformatician who will become CEO, and Tony Stephenson as Chief Operating Officer, alongside Simon Jupp as Technology Consultant.

Dr Malone and Mr Jupp have particular experience in projects such as Centre for Therapeutic Target Validation, EBI Linked Data Platform, Orphanet Rare Disease, and Experimental Factor Ontology.


For further information, please contact:
Tony Stephenson
Chief Operating Officer, FactBio
T: 07899 796655
E: tony@factbio.com

Content

Interested in using Kusp?

FactBio Products

It’s free to try Kusp.

Content