Accelerating Medicine for Childhood Cancer

The world-leading ZERO Childhood Cancer Program (ZERO) aims to provide the best chance of survival for all Australian children with cancer, by personalising their treatment plan. Designing ZeroDash has overcome their major data interpretation bottleneck, enabling the rapid interpretation of vast amounts of complex genomic and medical data in real-time.




Expanding the ZERO program to cover all ~1000 children newly diagnosed with cancer each year presented a daunting challenge. The current approach requires on average 96 hours of careful manual analysis by expert scientists and doctors to curate the vast amount of data for each patient, making the process time-consuming and expensive. To address this, the process needed to be streamlined and made more efficient and reproducible, with reduced turnaround times and costs. By optimising the data interpretation challenge, ZERO can make the benefits of precision medicine accessible to more children, leading to earlier diagnoses and more personalised treatments.


In a fruitful 2 year collaboration with CCI, We Discover iteratively designed and delivered a fully customised and globally unique solution that met ZERO's design specifications for analysing and visualising cancer genome data. The new system is secure, scalable, and user-friendly, allowing for the seamless integration of dozens of diverse data sources. We designed a streamlined and intuitive user interface to simplify the analysis of these complex data.  Our engagement consisted of the following outputs and deliverables:

  1. Product Management
  • Ran workshops to brainstorm for solution and objectives,  frame the platform’s vision, define goals and objectives,
  • Mapped the to-be/future state and create a product roadmap
  • Collaborated to map user stories
  • Refining scope & requirements - to achieve desired outcomes/solutions
  • Prioritise product backlog items
  • Working with developers on technical feasibility of solutions etc
  • Scrum framework - 2 week sprints
  1. Product Design
  • Conducted discovery through research and interviews with users to gain an in-depth understanding of the current process
  • Created a process map to visualise as-is state to be able to identify problems in the current state
  • Conducted series of workshops and ideation sessions
  • Set a weekly cadence of design-feedback-iterate (needs constant validation if data representation etc. or how we understand it are correct)
  • Design sprints have to be ahead of dev sprints 
  • Prototype to present to stakeholders & gather feedback
  • Usability testing to get feedback for design iterations & improvements
  • Design system?
  • Design quality assurance

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The design and delivery of ZeroDash has streamlined the data matching, interpretation, and reporting system, significantly reducing hands-on analysis time from 22 hours to 6.5 hours. ZeroDash has also reduced the number of data analysis queries needed to interpret each case. Other significant improvements include:

  • Streamlined data curation and interpretation, resulting in a 50% improvement in reporting efficiency and turnaround times.
  • Reduced time spent on manual tasks, allowing for the curation of more patients and the ability to undertake additional research projects while keeping up with field developments.
  • Streamlined training processes for new staff joining the ZERO program, facilitating rapid scaling on demand.
  • The ability to conduct curation training to upskill wider CCI research staff and students, ultimately utilizing multi-omics approaches to address their own research questions.
  • Future potential for CCI to offer paid training courses and software licensing opportunities in integrated multi-omics analysis and data curation.
  • A fit-for-purpose software solution capable of transitioning from research to clinical-grade testing and reporting in the future.
  • Improved risk profile of the program, ultimately benefiting CCI and KCC, due to a higher degree of automation, resulting in reduced human error and more reliable and robust reporting.
  • Facilitation of more rapid and meaningful interpretation of data sets, leading to greater clinical impact.



The design and delivery of ZeroDash has streamlined the data matching, interpretation, and reporting system, significantly reducing hands-on analysis time.


Reduction analysis time


Increase patient enrolment

"Working with We Discover has been an absolute pleasure. Their team understood our needs and designed and delivered ZeroDash. The project was completed on time and on budget, allowing us to expand our research program and make new discoveries.We couldn't be happier with the results."

Mark Cowley - Computational Biology Group Leader

Children Cancer Institute