EMBL’s sites provide spectacular views, such as this fiery sunset at the Wellcome Genome Campus in Hinxton. The campus, in the heart of the Cambridgeshire countryside, is home to several institutes and organisations working on genomics and computational biology. Among them is EMBL’s European Bioinformatics Institute (EMBL-EBI), one of EMBL’s six sites.
EMBL-EBI provides hundreds of freely available biological data resources. These are accessible 24/7 to any researchers with an internet connection, no matter where they are in the world. Researchers here work closely with software engineers to develop databases, tools and software, which make it possible to align, verify and visualise the diverse data produced in publicly-funded research, and to make that information freely available to all.
Millions of scientists use EMBL-EBI’s websites each month, and well over 64 million requests are made to EMBL-EBI websites each day. EMBL-EBI’s data centres can store over 270 petabytes (270 million gigabytes) of data. Their quiet and cosy surroundings are a disguise for the bustling virtual presence within.
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It’s almost a year since the coronavirus outbreak was declared a pandemic, affecting all our lives. While the virus continues its grip on the world, scientists are understanding it better and better, increasing our knowledge about it and opening up new ways to fight it.