BGI Taps Tianhe-1A Super for Genomics

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Genomics organisation BGI has launched a joint bioinformatics and computing laboratory with National Supercomputing Center in Tianjin (NSCC-TJ). Located in Binhai New Area of Tianjin, China, the Tianhe-BGI Bioinformatics and Computing Joint Laboratory will promote interdisciplinary cooperation in the fields of supercomputing and biological science, and aid development of omics-related industries.

The new lab is in part named after Tianhe-1A, the world’s second fastest supercomputer, which is currently installed at NSCC-TJ. Utilising the system’s 2.57 petaflops computing capacity and experience of multi-omics research at BGI, researchers from the two organisations will conduct an initial project to optimise the pipeline of bioinformatics analysis and develop stronger tools and algorithms to address many scientific challenges in life science.

‘In the next step, we will establish a comprehensive bioinformatics and computing platform based on Tianhe-1A. It will focus on the research and development of the high-performance software with higher efficiency, including standard analysis software, the analytical pipeline and tools for enormous data, among others,’ said Guangming Liu, director of CSCC-TJ. ‘We hope this new laboratory could greatly promote the applications of genomic technologies in agriculture, drug discovery and human health in Binhai New Area and make more contributions to the society.’

Professor Jian Wang, president of BGI, added: ‘In the past, it took a year to conduct a project on the genomics association study of 500 human samples, but now with Tianhe, three hours is enough. We believe this will broaden the applications of Tianhe-1A in life science and greatly accelerate the development of science and technology.’

This story originally appeared on HPC Projects. It appears here as part of a cross-publishing agreement with Scientific Computing World.