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FAQ

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Will you do my bioinformatics project for authorship?

Question:

Will you do my bioinformatics project for free (QC, analysis, figure generation, methods text and review the manuscript) if I put you as a middle author on our paper?

Answer:

As much as we love doing bioinformatics on so many interesting biological problems, it is impossible to sustain a facility with personnel and computing power without charging for our services with a few exceptions.  When it comes to collaborations, in order to treat everyone we serve equally, we follow the following guidelines with the assumption that the data analysis does not result in an overwhelming burden on GIF.

1) Data analysis on preliminary data in an effort to generate preliminary results will be done in good faith so long as it is to go toward a grant in which members of GIF are collaborating in some significant manner (CoPI, senior personnel or significant fee for service component).  The same for experimental design advice and methods text review etc.  

2) Data analysis of any data related to a grant for which a member of GIF is partially funded on a grant with another faculty.  So long as the data in question can be considered to conform with uniform guidance for acceptable work to be performed on a grant and does not exceed in great excess the percentage of time the individual is covered by the grant.  

3) If the project does not fall into 1) or 2) the project is done for a fee for service in order to recover expenses in order to maintain a reasonable number of personnel and compute in order to facilitate NGS data analysis on campus.

Why can't I just hire my own bioinformatician?

Question:

Why can't I just hire my own bioinformatician?

Answer:

Sequencing is cheap and getting cheaper. As a consequence of this, there is more and more data to analyze. Those institutions with the greatest resources: seed companies, pharmaceutical companies, government, have hired the bulk of the data analysts/bioinformaticians. Universities, as a consequence of this big data, are consolidating their computing infrastructure to save on cost and get more from a shared resource (more can be done quicker by sharing a large computer than buying a small one). Similarly, GIF is consolidating bioinformatics expertise. Instead of trying to find a postdoc or grad student and then training them, GIF has highly paid Associate Scientists and postdocs that are already trained. There is very little learning curve and results get turned around more efficiently.

Contact us at gifhelp@iastate.edu if you need:

  • Bioinformatics analysis
  • Student or postdoc training 
  • Grant bioinformatics review

More information about our services.
 

How much does bioinformatics cost for my project?

Question:

How much does bioinformatics cost for my project?

Answer:

The amount spent on bioinformatics will be at least as much spent on sequencing and more likely double the cost.

The amount of sequencing data that can be generated continues to increase exponentially. As data increases so does the complexity of the questions that can be answered with the data. As data and complexity increases the cost of bioinformatics increases. It is easy to underestimate the cost of bioinformatics. I use the above bolded text as a general guide for bioinformatics costs.

Rates for the Genomic Information Facility