The iii Core Bioinformatics logo with blue background and black searchlights showing code

As part of a strategy to provide Institute-wide bioinformatic project support, the iii  Core Bioinformatics has been created with Mr John Cole (pictured) appointed as Lead Bioinformatician.

Mr Cole, who was previously responsible for the bioinformatic support within the GLAZgo Discovery Centre as well as the Goodyear and McInnes laboratories, has considerable expertise and experience of omic data analysis, spanning transcriptomics, epigenetics, proteomics, metabolomics and genomics.

He is your first point of contact for information and support on available analysis techniques, staff training and advising on future grants and projects, as well as ensuring access management is simplified and improved.

Secure omic data storage

This includes downloading from the sequencing provider, storage on a RAID server, an external hard drive with the data for your lab and uploading to GEO upon publication of your dataset (by request). A 24-sample bulk RNA-seq project would cost £300 to handle and store for a full four years.

Bioinformatic training for wet-lab scientists

We provide comprehensive training aimed at wet-lab scientists with no previous experience in bioinformatics or coding. All courses run from 9.30am to 1.30pm (thus allowing for wet lab work in the afternoon) and cost £125 per person per week. All courses include live Zoom-based theory and computer practical sessions. Courses are designed to fully equip attendees with all the necessary skills to perform bioinformatic analysis by themselves. These courses are well rated, with an average of 9.3/10 after 73 reviews.

Courses cover: Using R to manipulate and plot omic datasets; Using R to identify and correct for confounding variables, handle complex experimental designs, identify signatures and predict disease state using biomarkers; Using the command line to process new omic datasets and create pipelines; General statistics with R. These cover the fields: Transcriptomics, Proteomics, Metabolomics, ChIP-seq and Genomics.

For more information please see the regular institute wide emails, or contact us directly.

Rent a bioinformatician

Rent an expert bioinformatician either via a fixed time-buyout or a subscription. The cost is £800 per full time week. There is no upper or lower limit to the amount of time you can buyout.

For example, A 24-sample bulk RNA-seq project with two-three biological groups would usually take one week to setup, download, process, identify significant genes and deeply explore. It would take a further week to provide several iterations of interpret, discuss, refine questions or identify new ones, re-explore. It would take a final week to decide on the story and put final manuscript figures together, then write methods and legends. The total cost for such a project would therefore typically be £2,400, from raw data to manuscript figures.

Costing is typically decided in advance. We do not make a profit; the price is cost of time only. We will consider a reduced rate for PhD students and ECRs.

Grant application support

We provide advice and support for research grant applications, including omic experimental designs, analysis plans and costing. If you wish to use our service for your bioinformatic analysis (should your grant be funded) you should include a named member of the III Bioinformatic Service in the grant application along with our recommended and jointly agreed time-buyout for the project. This is now an institute policy, and mirrors other services such as imaging.

Support for Honours and Masters student projects

In collaboration with Glasgow Polyomics, we provide means for masters students of any background or course to explore entire omic datasets as part or all of their Summer research projects. This requires no previous knowledge or experience of omics, and no coding. All methods are point and click via the students web browser. Full training and regular student support drop-ins will be provided. If your student can do an online shop, they can do this.

Supervisors can choose any suitable dataset, either from GEO or from their own lab. This support has been popular and well received, as bioinformatic experience is attractive to many students. The support costs £500 (i.e. 50 per cent of the student’s consumables fund). It is very possible for entire dry (analysis based) projects to be undertaken using this method.

For more information, please see our Moodle page or the regular College of MVLS-wide emails.

Weekly advice drop-in sessions

A zoom drop-in session named 'Ask a bioinformatician' runs every Tuesday 2-3pm. Anyone in iii can come along with no prior notice and ask any question they like about bioinformatics, data or coding.

Zoom Meeting ID: 980 5092 3481.



Your first point of contact for any and all queries is Mr John J. Cole (, based at the Sir Graeme Davies Building, room B6-28.

John will be more than happy to help and advise you in any way he can. Alternatively, please attend one of the weekly zoom drop-in sessions, at which he will be present most weeks.

A zoom drop-in session named 'Ask a bioinformatician' runs every Tuesday 2-3pm. Anyone in iii can come along with no prior notice and ask any question they like about bioinformatics, data or coding. Zoom Meeting ID: 980 5092 3481.