- What is “Project Unity”?
Project Unity is a collaborative network which hosts manages, analyzes and shares phenotypes and genomic data of plant populations. It is provided free to the academic community.
Users can interactively browse and query public data. Authenticated (logged in) users can create their own research group (i.e. workspace), create folders, upload germplasm passport data & images, upload phenotype and genotype studies on various populations, run GWAS and QTL analyses using different methods, and share the data and results with other users.
- How is it different from other databases?
For a start, you can log in and start working within a few minutes without the need to install or configure software, or contact IT people. In fact, Unity is so comprehensive it can constitute the entire management system of your genetic research and plant science data.
Moreover, the goal in Project Unity is to create standardization among different researchers and studies. This is done by allowing users to connect their data to a standardized and common terminology. For example, you can connect traits to ontology, DNA markers to genetic / physical maps and germplasm to pedigrees and their sources. This will evolve as more users and studies are loaded to the system.
- Is it specific for particular plant species?
No. You can load data for any plant species. If you cannot find a particular plant species, genetic map or ontology that you want to use, please notify us (firstname.lastname@example.org) and we will add it.
- Who can access my data?
Initially, your dataset is stored privately, and can only be accessed by you. At any time you have the right, but not the obligation to share your data with specific users, or with everybody, which typically occurs after publication of a scientific paper. We will not access or use your private data and we will not share it with others. See our pledge.
- Who owns the data?
You own and continue to own your data. We don’t claim any ownership of your data.
- Can I change the access rights to my data in the future?
Yes, you can change the status of each individual data set from ‘Private’ to ‘Public’ any time – and the other way round. Alternatively, you can share any data set with selected users.
- How can you ensure my data is secure?
Project Unity is hosted in Amazon’s cloud environment which is a highly reliable infrastructure utilizing top class security protocols with daily backups and compliant with international standards. Click for more information here and here.
- What kind of functions can I expect to find in Project Unity?
Users can browse public data and dynamically view markers effects on various phenotypes, populations, studies and environments. Logged in users can load and analyze their own data privately and match it to the public ones. Thus they can evaluate markers’ effect on other phenotypes as were measured in other studies by other researchers and in other locations.
- Is Project Unity focused mainly on QTL and GWAS?
Currently yes. Future releases of Project Unity will include more analytical capabilities.
- How can I use other methods and analyses options that are not yet available?
Currently you can’t. However, Project Unity was built using open source tools and is meant to be an open environment; future releases will allow adding your own functions, based on the R statistical language, into the system.
- How do you guarantee the quality of the uploaded and shared data?
We can’t, but we work with the world’s largest and most trusted academic institutions. Moreover, you can choose which data sets and from which users to compare your own data with.
- Who developed Project Unity?
Project Unity as a platform was developed by Phenome Networks, a next generation bioinformatics company, with highly innovative software solutions for the food and agricultural industries. The company was established in 2008 by academics from the Faculty of Agriculture of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. Click for more information here.
- How much does the use of Project Unity cost?
Project Unity is free for academic use.
If you work for a commercial, for profit organization please contact us for pricing at email@example.com.
- Does Project Unity support multiple languages?
Currently we support English but we are planning to support more languages. Nevertheless, you can use other language within your data sets.