MRI: Acquisition of an Illumina HiSeq2000 as a core sequencing instrument for genomics and gene expression research

Project: Research project

Project Details


This Major Research Instrumentation award supports the purchase of an Illumina HiSeq2500 DNA sequencing instrument for the Genomics Core Facility at Penn State's University Park campus. Sequencing of DNA is a key component of modern life sciences research. In the last decade, technologies for DNA sequencing have advanced at an astonishing rate. In that time frame, data output per instrument 'run' has increased by more than a trillion-fold. Consequently, the amount of DNA information available has skyrocketed, enabling revolutionary advances across all of the biosciences. The Illumina HiSeq2500 is the most powerful sequencing instrument available to date, both in terms of data output per unit time, and cost per DNA-base sequenced. Its very high quality, relatively long read lengths, and well-established sequencing chemistry allow the maximum experimental flexibility. It is capable of generating DNA sequence data to allow de novo genome assemblies, as well as re-sequencing and transcriptome studies. Installation of this instrument into the Genomics Facility will significantly enhance life science research at Penn State and beyond, particularly in three broad areas: Genomics and gene expression of non-model organisms, genomics of multispecies interactions, and regulation of gene expression. Given the flexibility and robust performance of this instrument, it is likely that many additional, as yet unforeseen areas of study will be enhanced by this instrument.

This instrument's capabilities will dramatically enhance life sciences research at Penn State. In addition, it will enhance interdisciplinary scientific training for Penn State researchers at the undergraduate, graduate, and post-doctoral levels. It's use and data will be integrated into existing hands-on graduate training programs and courses, and used as part of the regular series of workshops offered by the Genomics Core Facility. Access and training will be provided, through several existing programs, to several populations of students who are currently under-represented in the scientific enterprise. Experiments conducted on this instrument will also be used to enhance Penn State's continuing involvement with a consortium of predominantly undergraduate institutions for scientific training.

Effective start/end date10/1/129/30/15


  • National Science Foundation: $569,419.00


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