We at The Genome Center at Washington University were happy to get official word that we will be adding an additional 21 Illumina Genome Analyzers to our portfolio of sequencing technology. That enables us to sequence enough DNA to be equivalent to an entire human genome per day (at 25x coverage). There is a lot of excitement about the potential such capacity brings. The Genome Center’s director had this to say:
“Our intention to substantially scale-up with this technology reflects our commitment to large-scale sequencing projects that aim to uncover the underlying genetic basis of various human diseases. With the rapid decline in the cost of whole-genome sequencing, we believe now is the time to embark on initiatives which were previously not possible,” said Richard K. Wilson, Ph.D., Professor of Genetics and Director of the Genome Center at Washington University. “We are confident that we can further reduce the cost and accelerate the rate of human genome sequencing.”
A scale up of sequencing capacity brings a scale up in IT capacity. We’ll be watching our internal network, disk and HPC resources and scaling as appropriate. It will be likely that these sequencers alone will generate upwards of 20 TB of data per day, which needs further processing on The Genome Center’s computational resources. I’m excited about the possibilities that this scale up will bring!