Allotrope Foundation Achieves Two Major Milestones: Releases 1st Phase of Framework for Commercial Use and is Recognized with a 2017 Bio-IT World Best Practice Award

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Allotrope Foundation won the 2017 Bio-IT World Best Practice Award in Knowledge Management for the Allotrope Framework, and has released the first phase of the Allotrope Framework for commercial use.

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“We are really excited to announce our first product release and delighted to be recognized with the Best Practice award from a highly relevant and respected community.

Allotrope Foundation won the 2017 in Knowledge Management for the Allotrope Framework, and has released the first phase of the Allotrope Framework for commercial use.

The Bio-IT World Best Practices Awards

Bio-IT World’s Best Practices Awards were created to “not only elevate the critical role of information technology in modern biomedical research, but also to highlight platforms and strategies that could be widely shared across the industry to improve the quality, pace, and reach of science”. The Allotrope Framework implements a single, universal data format and addresses data quality at the source through ontologies and data models that provide rich, standardized metadata and a full audit trail. The overarching goals of this initiative are to enhance data integrity, reduce wasted effort, enable seamless interoperability, and to drive the realization of the full value of scientific data. Janet Cheetham, Chair of the Allotrope Board of Directors, noted that “We are really excited to announce our first product release and delighted to be recognized with the Best Practice award from a highly relevant and respected community. The growth of the Allotrope Foundation community and strong collaborative culture that has developed across the member companies and vendor partners since its inception in 2012 in partnering to deliver a “real world” solution to a common challenge in the scientific data landscape is unique. The wide ranging examples of the Allotrope Framework being actively developed and deployed at member companies since the release of version 1.0 in 2015, illustrate that we’ve made some real breakthroughs and are on the cusp of making a huge impact on data in our industry”.

Release of First Phase of the Allotrope Framework for Commercial Use

Allotrope Foundation’s release of the first phase of the Allotrope Framework for commercial use is a significant accomplishment. The release makes the Allotrope Data Format (ADF) and APIs (java and C#) available publicly under an access model which allows for the commercial and non commercial distribution of Allotrope enabled software as well as for academic and research use.

Wolfgang Colsman, Chief Innovation Officer at OSTHUS, the Allotrope Framework Architect, highlighted that “the release of the ADF is the first step in delivering the Allotrope Framework which has the potential to fundamentally transform the way data is captured, integrated, managed and reused across vendor, system and platform boundaries. The ADF format for the first time integrates semantic standards and capabilities into the general data storage structure. Coupled with the forthcoming releases of the Allotrope Taxonomy and Ontologies (AFO) and Allotrope Data Models (ADM) this will allow for the capture of “semantically aware” scientific data to provide context to the analytical data and accelerate data aggregation, analytics, visualization and trending.”

At a recent Allotrope Foundation Workshop and Forum hosted by GlaxoSmithKline at their Ware, United Kingdom site, attendees from both the end-user community as well Allotrope Partner Network (APN) representatives from the hardware and software community also lauded the Allotrope Foundation Framework and these recent achievements. Gerald Hall, Partner Relations, Agilent Technologies and Interim Leader of the APN Working Group noted, for example “Agilent's open-systems approach to laboratory informatics allows customers to select the best hardware and software for their needs. We believe the Allotrope Foundation framework will play an important role in providing the most user-friendly, flexible, and reliable software to our mutual customers."

Allotrope Foundation is continuing to progress on its mission and deliverables. Release of the Second Phase for the AFO is scheduled in September 2017 at the next Foundation workshop hosted by Merck & Co. at their Rahway, New Jersey site (register here: Phase Three release for the ADM will be by year-end 2017.

About the Allotrope Framework
The Framework is currently comprised of three components and is designed to evolve as science and technology evolves, maintaining the access and interoperability with legacy data, while lowering the barriers to innovation by removing the dependencies of legacy data formats.

ADF: The Allotrope Data Format (ADF) is a versatile data format capable of storing datasets of unlimited size in a single file in a vendor agnostic fashion that can adapt to handle any laboratory technique. The ADF comprises a data cube for storing numerical data in n-dimensional arrays, a data description layer for storing contextual metadata in a Resource Description Framework (RDF) data model, and a data package that serves as a virtual file system to store ancillary files associated with an experiment. Class libraries are included in the Allotrope Framework to ensure the consistent adoption of the standards.

AFO: The Allotrope Taxonomies and Ontology form the basis of a controlled vocabulary for the contextual metadata needed to describe and execute a test or measurement and later interpret the data. Drawing from thought leaders across member companies and the APN, the standard language for describing the equipment, processes, materials, and results is being developed to cover a broad range of techniques and instruments, driven by real use cases, in an extensible design.

ADM: Allotrope Data Models provide a mechanism to define data structures (schemas, templates) that describe how to use the ontologies for a given purpose in a standardized (i.e. reproducible, predictable, verifiable) way.

About Allotrope Foundation
Allotrope Foundation is an international consortium of pharmaceutical, biopharmaceutical and other scientific research-intensive companies, and over 40 commercial and academic partners, with a common vision to rethink scientific data, and revolutionize the way we acquire, share and gain insights from scientific data throughout its complete lifecycle, with an initial focus on analytical chemistry. The Allotrope Framework enables cross-platform data transfer, facilitates data sharing, and vastly increases its ease of use, giving rise to a new generation of software applications built to leverage any data from any analytical instrument. This effort is fully funded by the members of Allotrope Foundation. For more information, please visit:

About Allotrope Partner Network
The Allotrope Partner Network is a platform for Allotrope Foundation’s collaboration with the vendor community and members of academia to exchange ideas, provide input and obtain the tools and information needed to support the Allotrope Framework in software, hardware and services. Members enjoy access to technical training materials, pre-release software, comprehensive educational tools, and access to the real-life business requirements and Subject Matter Experts from Allotrope Foundation.

Join Us
Allotrope Foundation thrives on the collaborative contributions of its members and provides many opportunities for participation including design direction, early access to software, and valuable insights gained through workshops, seminars, and regular internal communications. Allotrope Foundation and the Allotrope Partner Network welcome new members to take part in these collaborative efforts, and drive the roadmap of future domains and innovation.

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James M. Vergis
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