Westgrid HPC Analysis Cluster
We use Westgrid when searching for disease-causing mutations in families with more than one affected person. The team can generate the differences from a reference for each person in the family, and then compare them to isolate the changes that appear in the affected family members, but not members who are healthy.
Hundreds of computing nodes are available for the parallel processing of gene sequencing from targeted resequencing up to a whole genome. Mapping tens of millions of reads from a DNA sequencer and then looking for evidence of differences from the reference would take over 24 hours on a single computer. By parallelizing the work onto Westgrid, the processing time is reduced to approximately 90 minutes. In essence, the same amount of mapping and variant detection is performed in a single workday instead of a full week.