News archive 2017


21 Dec 2017

ENA services over the holiday period

Between Friday 22nd December and Tuesday 2nd January ENA services such as submissions and retrieval will continue to be available. However, during this period our Helpdesk staff, including the developers of our submission and data access tools, will largely not be available to respond to incoming requests for support should you require assistance using the services; rather, requests over the period will be dealt with upon the return of staff in the new year. Read more
21 Dec 2017

ENA release 134 expected early January

The last release of assembled and annotated sequences for 2017 (134) has been particularly large, due mostly to an influx of WGS sequences. Due to this, we currently aim to have it completed in the first or second week of January.As previously announced, from the first scheduled release of 2018 (Feb/Mar; 135) we will no longer be including WGS (or TSA) sets in the release. Therefore, we anticipate a return to our regular quarterly schedule from release 135. Read more
21 Dec 2017

UniProt release 2017_12

Release 2017_12 is our last release of the year comprising 102,804,649 proteins! Read our release article about Psilocybin, magic mushrooms and updates to related entries. In more news, UniProt is switching to https.   Read more
Uniprot logo
20 Dec 2017

Curious genomes

All living things are made from the same stuff – DNA – but some genomes really show off the wonderful weirdness of Nature  Read more
Sketches of octopus, platypus and wheat. Credit: Spencer Phillips/EMBL-EBI
18 Dec 2017

Ontology Mapping Service: an EMBL-EBI – industry collaboration

Scientists working in many sectors, disciplines, countries and languages use different types of data about drugs and diseases for their research. Discoverability is a perpetual challenge. Read more
Ontology Mapping Service logo
13 Dec 2017

Ensembl release 91

Ensembl 91 is now live! Find out about the new and updated data and tools. Read more
Ensembl genome browser
6 Dec 2017

RNAcentral release 8

A new version of RNAcentral (release 8) is now available. This release includes Mouse Genome Informatics (MGI) as a new Expert Database as well as new data from Ensembl, HGNC, PDB, and Rfam. Read more
RNAcentral logo
4 Dec 2017

Takeda joins drug target discovery initiative

Open Targets announced today that Takeda has joined its pioneering public-private collaboration to transform drug discovery by improving the success rate for developing new medicines. Takeda is a global, R&D-driven pharmaceutical company with expertise in oncology, gastroenterology (GI) and central nervous system (CNS) disease that will complement the offerings of GSK, Biogen, the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute and the European Bioinformatics Institute (EMBL-EBI), and build on the initiative’s success. Read more
Open Targets background and logo


30 Nov 2017

Exploring 3D macromolecules in a flash

New techniques from gaming allow users to load giant 3D protein images quickly in PDBe Read more
Person holding tablet showing 3D protein structure in PDBe
29 Nov 2017

BioModels performance boost, new model formats

Public repository upgraded to handle more types of mathematical models and offer improved performance and search Read more
BioModels logo on gray background
22 Nov 2017

UniProt release 2017_11

Release 2017_11 out with 99261416 proteins! Browse poteins through or download data programatically from our APIs. Read more
22 Nov 2017

New releases: InterPro 66.0 and InterProScan 5.27-66.0

InterPro database version 66.0 and InterProScan version 5.27-66.0 for functional analysis are now available. InterPro now covers over 81% of the UniProt Knowledgebase and predicts GO terms for over 58 million proteins. Read more
InterPro logo
21 Nov 2017

Food security and bioinformatics

EMBL-EBI supports data-driven research into plants, pathogens, pollinators and pests. What’s next? Read more
Food security and bioinformatics: Illustration by Spencer Phillips, EMBL-EBI
21 Nov 2017

How malaria parasites reproduce: new insights

Study into the reproduction of malaria parasites reveals faster and broader protein regulation than expected Read more
Gametocytes of malaria-causing Plasmodium parasites
14 Nov 2017

New literature API: Europe PMC Annotations

Looking for text-mined annotations from biomedical literature? Try the new Europe PMC Annotations API. Read more
Europe PMC annotations API provides programmatic access to annotations text-mined from biomedical abstracts and open-access, full-text articles in Europe PMC.
10 Nov 2017

BioModels Model of the Month: Calmodulin

Computational model of calmodulin helps researchers investigate calcium signalling in the brain Read more
9 Nov 2017

Driving genomics: EMBL-EBI and GA4GH

EMBL-EBI is involved in three GA4GH Driver Projects, which are developing and testing the data standards needed to enable genomics in healthcare. Read more
Global Alliance for Genomics and Health logo
7 Nov 2017

Public to vote in 25 Genomes Project

The storyEMBL-EBI is helping celebrate the 25th anniversary of its close collaborator, the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, by participating in the 25 Genomes Project.The project will sequence the genomes of 25 UK resident species and make them available to the public through EnsemblThe Wellcome Trust Sanger Institutes invites members of the public, including school children to vote for the final five species in a competition organised with the "I'm a Scientist, Get Me Out of Here" programme Read more
25 genomes logo and image of robin. Image credit: Wikimedia Commons and Sanger Institute, Genome Research Ltd.
7 Nov 2017

A smart cabinet of curiosities

How open data is changing our pursuit of discovery Read more
EMBL-EBI databases reimagined as cabinet of curiosities


31 Oct 2017

FAIR mouse cancer models

Minimal information standard makes Patient-Derived Xenograft models easy to find, access, integrate and reuse Read more
Manual entitled PDX standards with albino mouse on cover
27 Oct 2017

Open access: transforming science

EMBL’s open access policy aims to make EMBL research widely and freely accessible. Its research ourputs are available for both reading and reuse, providing opportunities to enrich the scientific literature and transform the life and health sciences. Read more
Open Access illustration by Spencer Phillips, EMBL-EBI
25 Oct 2017

UniProt release 2017_10

Release 2017_10 has 93.8 million protein entries! New this release: changes to keywords and updates to our controlled vocabularies for Human Diseases and PTMs. Headline article: "Of Smell and Social Life," about new species annotations.  Read more
12 Oct 2017

Novel hearing loss genes identified

Scientists link 52 genes to hearing loss in mice for first time; could lead to insights into deafness in humans Read more
Mouse and soundwave
11 Oct 2017

Read data download issues resolved

Read data download issues previously affecting and services now resolved. Read more
6 Oct 2017

ENA read data download issues

Issues with read data download from and Read more
4 Oct 2017

ENA Release 133

Release 133 of ENA's assembled/annotated sequences now available Read more


28 Sep 2017

UK pupils and scientists explore parasite problem

SummaryChallenge: The human whipworm infects approximately 500 million people globally, mainly children, but there is no vaccine against it.Solution: Understanding the whipworm genome will help scientists develop vaccines and treatments effectively.Event: UK school students will work alongside scientists on the Wellcome Genome Campus near Cambridge to produce the first fully annotated genome sequence for the human whipworm.The Institute f Read more
Image of whipworm. Credits: Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute
26 Sep 2017

New releases: InterPro 65.0 and InterProScan 5.26-65.0

New releases: InterPro database (v. 65.0) and InterProScan (v. 5.26-65.0) for functional analysis. InterPro now covers over 80.7% of the UniProt Knowledgebase and predicts GO terms for over 53 million proteins. Read more
InterPro logo
21 Sep 2017

Ten years of training at EMBL-EBI

International experts gather at EMBL-EBI to reflect on the future of bioinformatics training Read more
Aerial shot of participants during 10 year anniversary Training Symposium
14 Sep 2017

EMBL-EBI to be HTTPS by default from 1-October

On the 1st of October the majority of services hosted on will be served over HTTPS by default. Services that are becoming HTTPS by default will automatically redirect users accessing the site on insecure HTTP URLs to secure HTTPS URLs.Users of EMBL-EBI services may wish to update links, bookmarks or API clients to use the HTTPS URLs. Read more
4 Sep 2017

Ensembl release 90 – Loads more genomes

Ensembl 90 is the biggest release yet of our genome explorer. Read more
Ensembl logo
1 Sep 2017

Bowel cancer study reveals impact of mutations on protein networks

SummaryIn the UK alone, 110 people are diagnosed with bowel cancer every dayScientists have completed a detailed study of many of the proteins in bowel cancer cell linesThe results could enable researchers to predict which drugs would be effective in treating bowel cancerFor the first time, scientists have completed a detailed study of many of the proteins in bowel cancer cells. Read more
Artist's impression of the human bowel


22 Aug 2017

BioModels: New patient derived metabolic models

EMBL-EBI’s BioModels Database hosts 6753 new patient-derived genome-scale metabolic models  Read more
Artist's impression of metabolic models. Credit: Spencer Phillips, EMBL-EBI


22 Jul 2017

Bioinformatics in Latin America

CABANA will consolidate bioinformatics in Latin America, focussing on disease, food production and biodiversity Read more
Map of Latin America and DNA data
20 Jul 2017

Biobanks: genetic data in demand

Enriched by successive studies and a growing amount of genetic data, biobanks are in higher demand than ever. Where are the bottlenecks? Read more
Icons representing data types in a biobank
19 Jul 2017

UK Biobank partners with the EGA

Genetic data from a major cohort is now distributed through the EGA, ensuring sustainable, secure delivery to approved biomedical researchers worldwide. Read more
Biological samples from a biobank. Stock image courtesy of the CRG.
12 Jul 2017

Submission service maintenance - 14/7/17 to 17/7/17

Webin submission services will not be available between Friday 14/7/17 10:00 and Monday 17/7/17.  During this time the capacity of the Webin upload area will be increased to support larger submission volumes. The following services will be unavailable during the scheduled maintenance:- FTP and Aspera Webin file uploads- Interactive Webin submissions- Programmatic Webin submissions Read more
7 Jul 2017

Update to Aspera server

EBI has built a new Aspera server on up-dated hardware with the latest Aspera version and configuration. This should improve your experience in downloading data via Aspera, and also address some of the recent problems that have been linked to the use of an old Aspera server version. The current Aspera hostnames will be switched over to use the new server on the 1st August. Read more
6 Jul 2017

UniProt Release 2017_07

With release 2017_07, UniProt offers data on over 88.5 million proteins! Browse the updated data on the UniProt website, or access it programmatically using our Java API, Proteins REST API or SPARQL endpoint. Read more
UniProt logo
6 Jul 2017

ENA Release 132

Release 132 of ENA's assembled/annotated sequences now available Read more


30 Jun 2017

Taxon support for sequence, WGS and assembly in ENA Browser Tools

You can now download sequence, WGS and assembly data by tax ID using ENA Browser Tools Read more
30 Jun 2017

New releases: InterPro 64.0 and InterProScan 5.25-64.0

New releases: InterPro database (v. 64.0) and InterProScan (v. 5.25-64.0) for functional analysis. InterPro now covers over 80.6% of the UniProt Knowledgebase and predicts GO terms for over 52 million proteins. Read more
InterPro logo
27 Jun 2017

Rfam 12.3 has been released

New Rfam release includes 101 new RNA families, new unified search and updated documentation. Read more
26 Jun 2017

The sexual dimorphism dilemma

Is the sex of research animals misdirecting medical research? Read more
Is the sex of research animals misdirecting medical research? Image: Spencer Phillips
26 Jun 2017

Mouse genes could help decipher human disease

Characterising more than 3000 mouse genes reveals new gene functions and associations with human disease Read more
Mouse genes could help decipher human disease. Image: Spencer Phillips
23 Jun 2017

New tools to download data from ENA

Introducing two new tools to make retrieving data from ENA much easier: enaBrowserTools and ENA FTP Downloader. Read more
21 Jun 2017

Guide to metagenomics data standards and best practice published

Our latest publication on data standards and best practices in metagenomics is available at and includes a call for the archiving of analysis results data sets. More... Read more
15 Jun 2017

UX toolkit aids industry R&D

User Experience designers rarely specialise in the life sciences – EMBL-EBI and the Pistoia Alliance look to fill the gap Read more
Revathi Nathaniel, UX expert at EMBL-EBI
13 Jun 2017

Open imaging data for biology

The Image Data Resource: prototype of the first open, online repository linking imaging and molecular data  Read more
Image Data Resource samples
1 Jun 2017

Human Cell Atlas data platform kicks off with support from CZI

EMBL-EBI, the Broad Institute and UCSC Genomics Institute will partner in developing a data coordination platform for the Human Cell Atlas, supported by CZI Read more
Human Cell Atlas logo


31 May 2017

SIFT-ing through sequence space in the PDB

The new, improved SIFTS service offers more targeted cross referencing. For example, it maps molecular structures in PDBe to the most appropriate isoform within a UniProt accession. Read more
Protein Data Bank in Europe logo
16 May 2017

RNAcentral Release 7

The latest version of the RNAcentral database is now available. Read more
RNAcentral logo
15 May 2017

Omics Discovery Index boosts FAIR data sharing

A global index led by EMBL-EBI emerges as the ‘PubMed Central of life-science datasets’ Read more
Omics DI search motif
9 May 2017

HipSci: The human stem cell bank of tomorrow

UK’s largest resource of human stem cells from healthy donors unveiled Read more
HipSci stem cell bank
9 May 2017

EVA issues long-term IDs for non-human variants

dbSNP and EVA to share responsibility for maintaining reliable, long-term accession numbers for genetic variation data Read more
The European Variation Archive logo
9 May 2017

New releases: InterPro 63.0 and InterProScan 5.24-63.0

New releases: InterPro database (version 63.0) and InterProScan (5.24-63.0) for functional analysis. InterPro now covers over 80.5% of the UniProt Knowledgebase and predicts GO terms for over 50 million proteins. Read more
InterPro logo


27 Apr 2017

New ENA discovery API

ENA has launched a new API to support programmatic search across all data types: Read more
13 Apr 2017

A race against the ageing clock

Research identifies mouse epigenetic clock that accurately predicts age and could help scientists understand the ageing process  Read more
11 Apr 2017

Genomics reboots deep learning

Deep learning is increasingly used to understand how genomes work: a new method from EMBL-EBI provides a perfect example Read more
Deep learning for epigenetics
3 Apr 2017

ENA Release 131

Release 131 of ENA's assembled/annotated sequences now available Read more


31 Mar 2017

A better way to find drug targets

The ChEMBL team at EMBL-EBI collaborated on a new way to identify drug targets from Genome Wide Association Studies Read more
Double helix stock image
30 Mar 2017

When science meets management Master’s of Management of Research Infrastructures offers new opportunities for leadership Read more
Executive Master's in research infrastructure management
29 Mar 2017

Ageing: cell coordination breakdown

EMBL-EBI researchers use single-cell sequencing to understand how cells age Read more
Artist's interpretation of the study findings: older cells losing their ability to coordinate an attack
28 Mar 2017

Life-science data: a global responsibility

A new coalition emerges to secure global data resources for the future of open science Read more
Abstract graphic for Global Life Science Data Resources Working Group.
15 Mar 2017

New releases: InterPro 62.0 and InterProScan 5.23-62.0

New releases: InterPro database (version 62.0) and InterProScan (5.23-62.0) for functional analysis. InterPro now covers over 80% of the UniProt Knowledgebase and predicts GO terms for over 48 million proteins. Read more
InterPro logo
9 Mar 2017

UX design for the life sciences: myths and realities

Laying the groundwork for EMBL-EBI’s User Experience Design community Read more
The UX team at EMBL-EBI
7 Mar 2017

Driving gender equality in science

Wellcome Genome Campus announces 2017 gender equality champions Read more
Helen Parkinson and Ele Zeggini, Best Practice Award 2017
3 Mar 2017

Watching immune cells fight malaria

Latest genomic technology uncovers secrets of immune cells’ response to malaria Read more
Artist interpretation of T-cell differentiation


15 Feb 2017

UniProt release 2017_02: Freshwater fish see red

UniProt release 2017_02 offers over 78 million protein records! Access them through our website or programmatic end-points. Read more
UniProt logo


30 Jan 2017

Changes to the Trace Archive at ENA

We are making some changes to capillary sequencing trace data at ENA (known as the Trace Archive).  The archive is now available in full via FTP at  This is a  mirror of the FTP archive at NCBI and therefore has the same directory structure (based on organism and strain) and file formats. We will update our FTP archive for new and updated files on the first Sunday of every month. Read more
24 Jan 2017

Genetic makeup of ‘room-mate’ influences health

EMBL-EBI research shows that healing and anxiety are influenced by the genetics of one’s social partners Read more
Artist's interpretation of social genetic effects: mice with different sleeping preferences
23 Jan 2017

New releases: InterPro 61.0 and InterProScan 5.22-61.0

InterPro version 61.0InterPro 61.0 integrates of 4239 new methods from the CDD (286), Pfam (8), SUPERFAMILY (10), PANTHER (3835), CATH-Gene3D (22), SFLD (77) and ProDom (1) databases. InterPro now covers 80.0% of UniProt Knowledgebase release 2017_01. It predicts Gene Ontology (GO) terms for over 44 million UniProt proteins via the InterPro2GO pipeline. Read more
InterPro logo
16 Jan 2017

Cancer genetics refine treatment decisions

How a knowledge bank could be used to find the best treatment option for people with acute myeloid leukaemia (AML) Read more
Animated gif of online AML calculator (tool for research)
12 Jan 2017

Buffering mechanism protects embryonic development

EMBL scientists uncover buffering mechanisms that protect an embryo’s development from detrimental effects of genetic variation Read more
Drosophila embryo over sea of noncoding RNA
9 Jan 2017

Science Is Global

In the relatively new field of bioinformatics, internationality is mission-critical Read more
Amelie Baud, EMBL-EBI researcher, marks her journey on a map.
6 Jan 2017

FTP Service update

FTP service is now resuming normal operation. Read more