Prof Andrew Lonie



Australian BioCommonsLEAD INSTITUTE
Australian Genomics Health Alliance (Australian Genomics)COLLABORATOR
Zero Childhood Cancer (ZERO)COLLABORATOR
Children's Cancer InstituteCOLLABORATOR
University of MelbourneCOLLABORATOR
Melbourne BioinformaticsCOLLABORATOR
Australian Access FederationCOLLABORATOR
Bioplatforms AustraliaCOLLABORATOR


Funded through NCRIS funding via Bioplatforms Australia and contributions from UMCCR and ZERO


There are multiple initiatives in Australia generating human genomes at scale. Although there is a desire to share data wherever possible, most have no efficient way to expose the collection content to researchers or to distribute the data. The outcome is that there is a substantial burden in sharing data with the current arrangements, and there is a need for scalable services and infrastructure that is: easily administered; allows for the efficient management of data files and metadata (storing, security, access control, findability, shareability/interoperability with collaborators and others); and integrated with global systems that observe and utilise tools/infrastructure that align with global standards for human genome data sharing.

Gen3 is an open source software suite that allows data to be received, managed, described, quality controlled and shared with authorised/authenticated individuals. Storage of data objects can be held over any number of private or public clouds. Gen3 has been used to underpin several very large NIH-funded genomic datasets that collectively house and describe data derived from hundreds of thousands of human samples (e.g. NCI Genomic Data Commons, BloodPAC, BrainCommons, Kids First Data Commons). Access to the actual genomic data is managed by a Data Access Committee (DAC) for each dataset, and controlled by various tools which are part of the Gen3 system. Data held in the cloud in a Gen3-based storage system can also be directly linked to cloud-based analysis systems.

Working with key partners Zero Childhood Cancer (ZERO)/Children’s Cancer Institute and the University of Melbourne Centre for Cancer Research (UMCCR), this 6 month project (April-September 2021) is exploring establishing the Gen3 technology in Australia. The broad objectives are to lay the necessary groundwork for ZERO and UMCCR to establish systems for easier management and sharing of their human genome data holdings, and to also ensure that other Australian providers/Institutions can easily deploy the same solution into the future.

For more information, see Australian BioCommons.