In addition to the skills listed on the “Expertise” page, the Bioinformatics Support Unit is able to offer the following range of services.

Research and Grants

The BSU are happy to collaborate on a wide variety of research topics. Drop us a line to set up a meeting so you can discuss your needs with us. We can also advise on the requirements for bioinformatics components of grant applications and support you at the grant writing stage, experimental design stage and through to your research analysis.

High Throughput Sequencing Support

We can help researchers using high throughput sequencing machines such as Illumina (MiSeq, HiSeq, NextSeq), Ion Torrent, Roche 454, or PacBio. Whether you are doing de novo sequencing of non-model organisms, comparative transcriptomics with RNA-Seq, ChIP-Seq for transcription factor binding or histone mark discovery, deep sequencing for polymorphism discovery or any other NGS application please get in touch about how we can help you. We have software packages available for a number of applications, and can always customise a solution to fit your data.


The BSU provides access to dedicated bioinformatics workstations in our offices in the Leech Building. These machines have a number of common bioinformatics tools installed. The BSU also have several powerful server solutions for work requiring more computational power with machines from 4 to 20 CPUs with 32GB to 256GB of RAM and several terabytes of associated storage.

The unit is also responsible for the administration of the FMS bioinformatics cluster resource. See the wiki for more information, and contact Ben Allen with any enquiries.


The unit administers a site-wide licence for GeneSpring 13 GX microarray analysis software (suitable for analysis of Affymetrix, Agilent, Illumina and custom microarrays). Seats on this licence are available for a small cost per researcher (£831.73 per annum). The unit also has a license for Ingenuity Pathway Analysis (IPA), we have a small per-analysis recharge rate for the use of this license. We provide support for many popular free and open source tools (R, Bioconductor, Cytoscape, PyMol, HMMER, BLAST, Jalview, IGV and many more).


The BSU has a commitment to provide training where necessary in all aspects of bioinformatics. Contact us with your request. We run short, tailored courses for your specific requirements. We also run more generic workshops for multiple participants on a regular basis.