Speaker Profile

Ph.D., Sr. Director, Translational Genomics and Product Development at the Broad Institute of MIT & Harvard

Niall Lennon has been working on NGS applications and product development at the Broad for over 11 years. Most recently, Dr. Lennon oversaw the creation, certification and launch of a CLIA certified & CAP accredited laboratory within the Broad. He has led the efforts to validate and implement clinical Whole Exome and Whole Genome sequencing. Concurrently, Dr. Lennon oversees a portfolio of R&D that includes methods for sensitive mutation detection from liquid biopsy, and a team of computational biologists who implement and deliver custom analyses in support of research and clinical trials. Niall is currently an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Biomedical Engineering at Tufts University. He also holds an executive certificate in Management and Leadership from the MIT Sloan School of Management. Niall earned a PhD in Pharmacology, and a BSc from University College Dublin, Ireland.


Clinical Dx Showcase: Senior Director, Translational Genomics and Product Development, Broad Institute of MIT & Harvard
The genomics group at the Broad Institute has sequenced >85,000 human genomes and >300,000 human whole exomes, in addition to thousands of transcriptomes and custom gene panels, equating to >14 petabases of sequence data under management. The scale of our enterprise means that local storage and analysis of sequence data is no longer feasible. We have developed a cloud-based analytical platform, Firecloud, to host and process large datasets. In Firecloud, analytical workflows can be rapidly developed and deployed. The analytical methods group at Broad is responsible for continuous development and improvement of software such as the GATK to support the genomics community. More and more their work includes ensuring cloud-compatibility and optimal implementation of analytical tools. The Translational Analysis Group at Broad is tasked with taking methods from the development teams (and others) and running cloud workflows in support of basic and clinical research. Workflows are now available for somatic (tumor normal SNV, InDel, CNV, Rearrangement, mutation burden, RNA Fusions) and germline (GATK calling, genotype concordance) applications. We will discuss the opportunities and challenges of operating across the spectrum from Big Data management and infrastructure to individual analyses on cloud-based platforms.

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