Information Systems

Program Leadership

Tim Steele, MBA
Director
Tim Steele, MBA
919.681.5429 Email

Overview

The Duke Cancer Institute Information Systems (DCI-IS) is a shared resource providing information systems to DCI members in support of clinical, translational, and basic biomedical research. The resource provides a call-in helpdesk, desktop and infrastructure support and assistance and consultation for database development, application development, servers and web applications. The goal of the resource is to provide comprehensive computational support to enable researchers to use technology in the most efficient manner possible to accomplish their research goals. In addition to application and data server support, DCI-IS provides support for large scale servers and software for the DCI's Biostatistics and Bioinformatics Shared Resources.

The resource provides support for approximately 1000 users in DCI member laboratories.

DCI-IS collaborates with the Duke Health Technology Solutions (DHTS) on enterprise level IT efforts and programs. Financial support for this shared resource is provided through a combination of grant support, chargeback, and institutional funding. 

Services

  • Infrastructure, hardware and software to meet the computing needs of DCI members and DCI-based Shared Resources.
  • Expertise in IS options to meet computational needs.
  • Liaison to institution-wide information technology efforts to ensure DCI needs are accounted for.
  • 21CFR Part 11 Compliant Electronic Data Capture (EDC) platform.
  • EDC using Oracle Clinical, Medidat RAVE, and REDCap
  • Biobanking informatics (Nautilus and Lab Advantage) for the brain tumor biorepository and the brain tumor immunotherapy program
  • DCI Reporting Portal, a tool that presents a unified view of clinical research data aggregated across the oncology clinical research unit.
  • Virtualized server environment that is highly available and fault tolerant
  • A prediction tool (mCRPC Nomogram) for Metastatic Castrate Resistant Prostate Cancer Patients (MCRPC) used for predicting the overall survival of prostate cancer.
  • The facility supports a variety of computing platforms and integrated applications.
  • SharePoint development and management
  • Custom web, database and application development.
  • Business continuity is provided via industry standard backup and archival systems, including off-site data backup storage.

Technologies

  • State-of-the-art secure data center with biometrics access, temperature and humidity controls with fire suppression, UPS and emergency generator power protection
  • All servers and workstations are also protected by up to date anti-spyware, anti-malware and anti-virus software
  • Platforms include: Microsoft Windows Server, Red Hat Enterprise Linux, and Debian Linux.
  • Supported applications include, SAS, R/Bioconductor, Microsoft SQL Server, Microsoft Office, Oracle databases, Oracle Clinical and Medidata Rave

Equipment

The core compute and storage environment uses the Cisco’s Unified Computing System (UCS) platform for state-of-the-art virtualization using VMWare, multi-tiered storage for application and file storage using EMC’s VNX and Isilon storage arrays, and EMC DataDomain storage for tapeless off-site backups. All compute and storage are located in a primary offsite data center with additional data centers for business continuity.  

Accessing the DCI-IS

The DCI-IS service desk, is operated from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday thru Friday. Twenty-four-hour emergency assistance is available by pager. Non-emergency inquiries can be made through the online Incident and Request forms. To access the online forms, visit the DCI Information Systems section of the DCI Intranet (only accessible when connected to the Duke network).

Online forms have been created to facilitate centralized prioritization of service requests, specifically including clinical trial support, application development and database development projects. All clinical trial support requests and application/database development needs are submitted via these web forms and are prioritized accordingly.