Microsoft Genomics for Research

Microsoft Genomics for Research

About

About

The Microsoft Genomics for Research program awards Microsoft Azure cloud computing resources to researchers interested in testing and developing their own next-generation sequencing (NGS) pipelines using the Microsoft Genomics service. Microsoft Genomics is an easy-to-use, scalable cloud service for secondary analysis of genomes. The service is an optimized version of the Broad Institute’s best practices pipeline, BWA-GATK. Learn more about it at microsoft.com/genomics.

These awards are intended to drive exploration and discovery by providing an easy-to-use service for secondary analysis of genomes. Outputs can be easily integrated to external tertiary analysis tools, such as Microsoft R Server on HDInsight.

Application instructions

To qualify for our awards program, applicants must be affiliated with an academic institution. In addition to individual investigator projects, we are interested in projects that will support integrated analysis of genotypic and phenotypic data. Faculty, researchers, and PhD graduate students are qualified to submit proposals for Azure awards. Master’s-level and undergraduate students require a faculty project supervisor to submit their proposal.

Submit your proposal

Apply now for access to Azure cloud computing resources. Submitting a short proposal is simple, and you will receive a decision within four weeks. The project awards will start January 1, 2018, and will expire on June 30, 2018. Information included in your application will be reviewed only for RFP-related decisions.

  • Length: Your proposal should be no longer than three pages.
  • Language: Your proposal must be written in English.
  • Title: Your proposal title must begin with “Microsoft Genomics for Research” to ensure that your proposal is considered for this award.
  • Include:
    • A description of the project you are working on, how you will use the Microsoft Genomics service, why it is important, and how it can help transform the way we use genomic information to better understand health and disease.
    • Your resource requirement estimates (for example, storage requirements, number of genomes you aim to process) and how you will use any other Azure advanced analytics offering, if applicable.

Submission: Submit your proposal via the online application form.

Deadlines: Proposals must be submitted on or before December 1, 2017.

FAQ: For more details about how to produce a good proposal, see our FAQ.

FAQ

FAQ

Can I apply if I am using my own genomics software/services and not using Microsoft Genomics service?

This program is designed to allow researchers to experiment with, develop, test, and deploy their own pipelines using the Microsoft Genomics service. Researchers who are not using Microsoft Genomics service are not eligible. If you would like to discuss using Microsoft Azure for your genomics project that does not require the Microsoft Genomics service, then please contact azgen@microsoft.com.

I work for a hospital and am interested in trying Microsoft Genomics services, am I eligible?

Only those researchers who are affiliated with a university are eligible, as the award will be granted through a university email account. This includes research teams who are part of a university group/program. Please contact azurerfp@microsoft.com if you would like to discuss this with us.

My project lasts longer than six months, can I get an award for longer than this?

This program is designed to allow researchers to experiment with, develop, test, and deploy their own pipelines using the Microsoft Genomics service. It is not designed for long-term use of the service, but to evaluate its suitability for your research or production deployment. Applicants should indicate how they will continue to use the service after the six-month evaluation period in their proposal. If you would like to discuss this, please contact azurerfp@microsoft.com.

How do I find out more about the Microsoft Genomics service?

You can find out more about the Microsoft Genomics service at microsoft.com/genomics. Additional technical information on the Microsoft Genomics Python client is available here. This includes tutorials, walkthroughs, and code samples.

What does the Microsoft Genomics service do?

Microsoft Genomics has developed an easy-to use cloud-based service for genomic alignment and variant calling. The service follows the best practices for variant discovery in human whole genome sequencing as established by the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard. In addition, the service runs reliably and securely at scale, behind a secure web service API. The Microsoft Genomics service provides comprehensive compliance coverage, including ISO certification and compliance with HIPAA regulations (see the Microsoft Trust Center for more information).

Users don’t need to deal with the complexity of managing and updating their hardware and software and can rely on fast, efficient execution of an accurate best-practices genomics pipeline. The results can be easily connected to tertiary analysis and machine learning services, such as Microsoft R Server on Azure.

How do you use Microsoft Genomics service?

The service runs reliably and securely on Azure, behind a secure web service API. Clients can run their Linux or Windows computational pipelines directly from the Microsoft Genomics Python client.

My research is not for human genetics, but for metagenomics/bacteriophage genomics/cyanobacteria genomics/pharmacogenomics/agriculture. Can I use the Microsoft Genomics service?

The Microsoft Genomics service is specifically designed to accelerate secondary analysis of human genomes. It is not designed for other applications at this time. If you would like to discuss using Microsoft Azure for your genomics project in more detail then please contact azgen@microsoft.com.