Bioinformatics and Research Computing (BaRC), Whitehead Institute

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Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research, Cambridge, MA

    Bioinformatics & Research Computing (BaRC) Department 


   Fran Lewitter, Ph.D., Director of BaRC, (lastname AT 

Group size:

   - total staff is 6
   - 1 Ph.D. director, 1 Ph.D. Senior Bioinformatics Scientist, 2 Bioinformatics Scientists, 
      1 M.S. Bioinformatics Analysts, and 1 Senior Graphics specialist. 
   - We have a full IT department that manages our systems and network. 


   The Whitehead Institute is a private research institute affiliated with MIT. All PIs at 
   Whitehead hold faculty appointments at MIT. There are 18 labs - 16 Faculty and 2 
   Whitehead Fellows - with undergrads, graduate students, postdocs and technicians. 
   Labs range in size from 6 to low 40s. 


  We support software on Macs, PCs and Unix. For desktop software we currently 
  support LaserGene, MacVector, Sequencher, Gene Construction Kit. Vector NTI,
  DNAStrider, lots of graphics software. On the Unix side we have EMBOSS, 
  University of Washington Genome Center Software, NCBI-Blast, 
  Matlab, R, BioConductor, Patscan, Primer3, HMMER, clustalX, etc. 

Pertinent hardware info:

  The IT department supports a large cluster of machines and provides ample storage 
  to support the scientific work at the Institute.


  - Hands on mini-courses. See BaRC Education Pages.
  - Our "Hot Topics" series is held monthly and includes less than an hour talk about some 
     specific tool or topic.  
  - REACH (Roundtable Exchange: Advancing Computational Horizons) is a series for more
     in-depth presentations of computational biology applications and is primarily for scientists 
     engaged in heavily computational projects.  
  - We also do lots of one-on-one training. 

Bioinformatics support model:

  basic model is training, education, consultation and collaboration in the areas 
  of bioinformatics and graphics. 

Funding model:

  Institutional funds and grants.