I am now caught up on #opendata highlights - with infectious diseases and genetics!

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Because I've had a gap in blogging over the last few months, I thought I would ease back into things by highlighting public health-related data sets going back through Data is Plural, one edition at a time.

This is the last one - I'm finally caught up!

The June 28 edition of Data is Plural features two health-related data sets - one on infectious diseases in Europe and another that contains people's self-published results of commercial genetics tests:
Infectious diseases in Europe. The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control’s Surveillance Atlas of Infectious Diseases lets you browse, map, and download data on the historical incidence of several dozen diseases — from anthrax to Zika — in each of the European Economic Area’s countries. Related: Keila GuimarĂ£es’s recent investigation into penicillin shortages, which uses the Centre’s data on syphilis cases.

People’s genes. OpenSNP is a website that lets people publish the results of their genetic tests (such as those sold by 23andMe, deCODEme, FamilyTreeDNA), “find others with similar genetic variations, [get] the latest primary literature on their variations, and help scientists find new associations.” Since 2012, users have uploaded more than 3,000 sets of genetic variants, which you can download individually or in bulk or access via OpenSNP’s API. Users can also list various personal traits, such as eye color, height, coffee consumption, and lactose intolerance. Useful primer: SNP stands for “single nucleotide polymorphism,” the NIH explains. They’re “the most common type of genetic variation”; each one “represents a difference in a single DNA building block, called a nucleotide.”

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