Context: Union Minister of state for Science and Technology recently dedicated Indian Biological Data Centre (IBDC) to the nation.
About Indian Biological Data Centre:
- The Indian Biological Data Centre is India’s first national repository for life science data.
- It will store all life science data generated from publicly funded research in the country.
- It operates with the assistance from the Department of Biotechnology (DBT).
- In long-term, IBDC seeks to become a major data repository for all life science data originating from India.
- It was established at the Regional Centre of Biotechnology (RCB) in Faridabad, Haryana.
- It has a data “disaster recovery” site in National Informatics Centre (NIC) in Bhubaneshwar.
- It has a data storage capacity of around 4 petabytes.
- It hosts the ‘Brahm’ High Performance Computing (HPC) facility.
The objectives of IBDC:
- Provide IT platform for archiving of biological data originating from India.
- Develop standard operating procedures for storing and sharing of life sciences data based on FAIR (Findable, Accessible, Interoperable and Reusable) principle.
- Perform quality control and curation of data, maintain data backup and manage data life cycle.
- Develop web-based tools/APIs for data sharing or retrieval
- Organize training programme for analysing of large data and create awareness about the benefits of data sharing.
- At present, most Indian researchers depend on the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) and National Centre for Biotechnology Information databases for storing biological data. ‘Indian Biological Data Bank’ will reduce our dependency on them.
- TB Bacteria sequences will help not only in understanding the spread of multi-drug and extremely drug resistant TB in the country, but also aid the search for targets for new therapies and vaccines.
- With genomes of humans, animals, and microbes present in the same database, it will also help researchers in studying zoonotic diseases, that is, diseases that jump from animals to humans.