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Jun 23, 2011

JMP Life Sciences Seminars Starts in Great Lakes Area

We kicked off the JMP Life Sciences seminar series in Indianapolis on Tuesday, October 5, with the JMP Great Lakes team: Account Executive Dan Durkin and Systems Engineer Sam Gardner. The venue and setup for the seminar at the Westin Indianapolis was absolutely fantastic, and the room was full of attendees -- all eager to learn about the JMP family of products for life sciences.

Near the beginning of my introductory talk, I asked for a show of hands for JMP users, then SAS users. Then I asked how many people were using JMP and SAS together, and was surprised to find that no attendees raised their hands! This meant that we had a lot of ground to cover to familiarize the attendees with JMP’s SAS integration features and show how these were used in our vertical products, JMP Genomics and JMP Clinical.

During my talk, I introduced the JMP product family and the many areas of life sciences where JMP is used. I talked about the tools for import, workflow and visualization offered by JMP, JMP Genomics and JMP Clinical, and also introduced JMP Pro, the newest member of the JMP family, with advanced data mining and modeling features.

Jordan Hiller, JMP Life Sciences Field Application Scientist, presented JMP Genomics next with a case study on biomarker discovery in expression and SNP data from studies of osteonecrosis of the jaw. In addition to presenting a detailed analysis of each data set, Jordan also demonstrated the predictive modeling and cross validation capabilities that JMP Genomics provides for very wide data sets, where predictors greatly outnumber samples. (The JMP Genomics team put these capabilities to the test as members of the MAQC Phase II consortium team that recently published a series of papers in Nature Biotechnology focused on best practices for predictive modeling on large genomics data sets.)

At lunch, I talked to several SAS users who were interested in using JMP to generate interactive graphics from their SAS data sets. One had downloaded a trial copy of JMP recently, and was impressed at how quickly he was able generate a graphic that exactly illustrated a flaw in his data set using JMP’s Graph Builder -- and win an argument with a colleage in the process! (It’s amazing how a picture really can be worth a thousand words sometimes.) I heard great feedback from JMP users in general about Data Filter and Graph Builder. One attendee urged a colleague to update from JMP 6 to JMP 8, saying that those two features (introduced in 7 and 8, respectively) were among his favorite JMP features.

After lunch, Jordan presented the latest member of the JMP family of products, JMP Clinical 2.1. Built on the JMP Genomics 4.1 architecture with JMP 8 and SAS 9.2, JMP Clinical streamlines the analysis and visualization of drug safety data for medical reviewers. Attendees seemed especially impressed with how JMP graphics such as tree maps and volcano plots could be used to summarize information on adverse events by body system and quickly identify specific adverse events that were increased or decreased in patient populations, respectively. They also loved the easy selection of subjects in tables or graphs for immediate drill-down to graphical patient profiles.

Finally, JMP Systems Engineer Sam Gardner covered JMP tips and tricks. I love that these sessions are included in so many JMP events, including our life sciences events! First of all, JMP and SAS users can always benefit from a better understanding of how JMP integrates with SAS and the many cool tools JMP offers! But my selfish reason for loving these sessions is that I always learn something new about JMP. I wasn’t disappointed this time. Sam mentioned the trick of creating a linked subset table by right-clicking on the Selected number of rows in the lower left hand corner of the data table. If you edit the linked subset table, it changes the corresponding information in the original data table, too. How had I never tried that one before? I have been using JMP since graduate school, but it still sometimes surprises me with neat little tricks like that. With JMP 9 and JMP Genomics 5 (built on JMP 9) coming this month, there are many more new tricks to come.

This was the first of five events in this series. Later this week we will be in South San Francisco and Carlsbad, CA. The following week, events will be held in Cambridge, MA, at the Broad Institute and in Edison, NJ. If you haven’t registered for an event in your area, please come join us! And if there is no event in your area, drop us a note to recommend some locations for the future!