Within five years we estimate there will be more than 30,000 Australian researchers (and somewhere around 200,000 students) in agriculture, environment and health, spread across multiple roles: bioinformaticians, researchers who use and rely on bioinformatics-driven techniques, and those (the majority) who are still lab-focussed, perhaps using online resources to interpret research findings. These groups will […]
Alan Lo, Project Manager, Research Platform Services, University of Melbourne
|National Computational Infrastructure (NCI)||COLLABORATOR|
|Queensland Cyber Infrastructure Foundation (QCIF)||COLLABORATOR|
|University of Melbourne||COLLABORATOR|
|University of Queensland||LEAD INSTITUTE|
NCRIS Agility Fund
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Biosciences research in Australia involves a diverse set of activities from local to national, across a range of life sciences areas (e.g. genomics, clinical, translational, population studies, etc.) and consequently has a diverse set of complex digital infrastructure needs. Identifying how informatics capabilities and infrastructure can strategically support national priorities in this research community is central to the value of this platform. By providing a connected environment, linking existing bioinformatics skills, infrastructure, software and data, the platform will support a number of prioritised research activities.
National initiatives such as BPA are already producing reference datasets of international relevance and interest (e.g. Sepsis multiomics data resource). Bioinformatics and expertise is existent through key international efforts such as EMBL-ABR, and key research projects such as ASPREE are generating data which requires integrated environments from which to derive most value. The Australian BioSciences Cloud will play host to tools, data and managed services which support the informatics needs of these already prioritised initiatives. Primary users of the platform will come from medical research precincts (Clayton and Parkville) and their medical research institutions, as well as biosciences-rich institutions including University of Queensland, Monash University, University of Melbourne and University of New South Wales.
Starting out, Melbourne Bioinformatics experts Andrew Isaac, Yousef Kowsar and Simon Gladman are contributing their knowledge of the infrastructure required for the Genomics Virtual Laboratory to work on connecting Australian researchers directly to AGRF services through the Nectar cloud. Less immediate but equally important, Director, EMBL-ABR & Melbourne Bioinformatics, Andrew Lonie is preparing a paper envisioning our future needs for eInfrastructure in the biosciences. Deputy Director EMBL-ABR, Vicky Schneider has led the strategy to envision key projects which will have the most impact, such as adopting a benchmarked annotation tool on the GVL, and how this might be used for the wheat genome community and linking up the people to drive the OzMammals project.