Shenzhen, China - BGI, the world's largest genomics organization, started the trail operation of "BGI-BOX", its first cloud computing terminal server, in China Agricultural University on December 8. BGI-BOX is designed for users without bioinformatics background and it allows users to access bioinformatics analysis and genomic data in their own laboratories with the advantages of easy to use, high flexibility and user-friendly interface.
With the rapid development of high-throughput sequencing technology over the past ten years, the cost of DNA sequencing is decreasing much faster than data processing. Given that such research creates huge amounts of data, cloud computing is becoming a favorable solution for large-scale bioinformatic analysis, both in terms of resource utilization, flexibility, and efficiency, as well as time and cost savings for massive data generation and computation.
"To meet the increasing demand for bioinformatics analysis, BGI has developed a high performance platform for researchers, comprising the distributed cloud computing pipelines and tools." said Ye Yin, Director of Research and Cooperation Division at BGI, "From the beginning of this year, BGI has conducted many testing and adjustment on the system in several different centers. I'm so excited that BGI-BOX has been successfully launched as scheduled. With this server, researchers could conduct the bioinformatics analysis with fast turnaround time and lower cost."
The system of BGI-BOX contains a series of BGI's standard bioinformatics analysis pipelines and software, including assembly tools, genetic variation analysis software, among others. There are two ways for remote users to easily access BGI's cluster computing and storage resources: one is logging on to BGI-BOX directly and locally, the other is logging on to BGI's computing centers by remote access. With this cloud computing terminal server, users not only can perform basic bioinformatics analysis based on the genomic data, but also can conduct customized analysis on a variety of biological data sets by choosing relevant software and adjusting specific parameters under each analysis module.
"The debut performance of BGI-BOX is satisfactory. Many of our collaborators have expressed their willingness to install BGI-BOX in their labs in order to share and exchange data in a cloud environment." said Yin Ye. "In the first quarter of next year, we plan to install 50 BGI-BOXs worldwide to build a powerful and efficient cloud platform and support our partners with convenient access of bioinformatics analysis at hand." He added.
BGI was founded in Beijing, China, in 1999 with the mission to become a premier scientific partner for the global research community. The goal of BGI is to make leading-edge genomic science highly accessible, which it achieves through its investment in infrastructure, leveraging the best available technology, economies of scale, and expert bioinformatics resources. BGI, and its affiliates, BGI Americas, headquartered in Cambridge, MA, and BGI Europe, headquartered in Copenhagen, Denmark, have established partnerships and collaborations with leading academic and government research institutions as well as global biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies, supporting a variety of disease, agricultural, environmental, and related applications.
BGI has a proven track record of excellence, delivering results with high efficiency and accuracy for innovative, high-profile research: research that has generated over 170 publications in top-tier journals such as Nature and Science. BGI's many accomplishments include: sequencing one percent of the human genome for the International Human Genome Project, contributing 10 percent to the International Human HapMap Project, carrying out research to combat SARS and German deadly E. coli, playing a key role in the Sino-British Chicken Genome Project, and completing the sequence of the rice genome, the silkworm genome, the first Asian diploid genome, the potato genome, and, more recently, have sequenced the human Gut Metagenome, and a significant proportion of the genomes for the1000 Genomes Project. For more information about BGI, please visit http://www.