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Cancer Research developing mobile game with help from Facebook, Google and Amazon

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By Jennifer Faull, Deputy Editor

March 2, 2013 | 2 min read

Cancer Research UK has joined forces with Facebook, Google and Amazon to develop a mobile game that will allow users to join in the search for new cancer drugs using vital scientific data.

To get development underway, 40 computer programmers, gamers, graphic designers and other specialists will take part in a weekend "GameJam", running from March 1 – 3, to turn the charity's raw genetic data into a game format, which players of the game will be able to investigate while playing.

Carlos Caldas at Cancer Research UK's Cambridge Institute.commented on the initiative: "We're making great progress in understanding the genetic reasons cancer develops. But the clues to why some drugs will work and some won't are held in data which need to be analysed by the human eye - and this could take years.

"By harnessing the collective power of citizen scientists we'll accelerate the discovery of new ways to diagnose and treat cancer much more precisely."

"With the collective power of hundreds of thousands of people across the globe helping our scientists to analyse this data we could drastically speed up research."

After the GameJam an agency will be tasked with building the game concept into reality, with an expected launch date of mid-2013.

Philip Su, engineering site director of Facebook London, which will be taking part in the development process, believes the best way to solve a problem "is to bring smart people together to 'hack' a solution."

"That approach is just as valid in the field of life sciences as it is in software engineering," he said.

Google Entertainment Marketing: Movies, TV, Music and Gaming App

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