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March-April News Briefs


NCBI Closes Archives

NCBI will discontinue its Sequence Read Archive (SRA) and Trace Archive repositories for high-throughput sequence data and the Pepidome Repository, citing budgetary constraints. Closure of SRA and the Trace Archive will occur in phases, with all submissions ceasing within the next 12 months. The Pepidome Repository online browser, query and display interfaces are scheduled to be closed within weeks, with existing data and metadata files available on the NCBI ftp server.

Cloud informatics

DNAnexus is supporting Complete Genomics sequence data for the Cloud-based DNAnexus informatics platform. The DNAnexus platform will give CGI customers streamlined access to a Cloud-based informatics option for visualizing and querying structural variations, copy number variations, and small variants and further enable information to be gleaned from their data.

Cloud Recipes by Amazon?

Amazon Web Services released CloudFormation, a free “recipe book” for creating Cloud services by template. Users choose which features they need, and CloudFormation takes care of how those resources are provisioned. Amazon said the goal is to “free developers from having to think about and navigate these types of interdependencies.”

Solving GPCR Structures

Brian Kobilka, co-founder of ConfometRx, a Bay-area biotech company, and Stanford University were awarded a patent for a pioneering fusion-protein strategy for solving GPCR structures. This novel T4-lysozyme fusion protein technique was first developed for the B2 adrenergic receptor and has since been used to solve the structure of three other GPCRs. 
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