Simplifying our GRCh37 Services

We are considering the removal of support for all non-human species from the grch37.ensembl.org website and database from release 100 onwards, planned for spring next year. This is a copy of the data on our Ensembl v75 archive and has not been updated since 2014. We suggest that anyone working with non-humans switch to either the latest website at www.ensembl.org, or if you specifically need the older data currently on grch37.ensembl.org to use the e75.ensembl.org archive, which has a complete copy of all data originally released in Ensembl v75 and will remain active for the foreseeable future. If you feel that this change will have a significant impact on your analyses, please let us know.

The dedicated GRCh37 Ensembl website was created in 2014, when we released e76, our first Ensembl with the current human genome assembly, GRCh38. The purpose of the site was to allow new functionality to be made available over the old human genome for those still working with it. The database was originally a freeze of e75, taking everything that was available at that time. Since then, only the human variation and regulation data have been regularly updated, the genes and comparative genomics data have remained static. Data for other species has also not been updated in our GRCh37 services, and more recent data is available on our main website. We have also kept the grch37.ensembl.org up-to-date with changes in the website design and underlying web-drawing code, as well as our APIs.

Impact on human views

We would no longer display any multi-species comparative genomics data on the grch37.ensembl.org website: this includes the gene trees, orthologues and whole genome alignments, although we will maintain the lists of within-species paralogues for human genes. The up-to-date versions of all of these data are accessible from www.ensembl.org. If you want to see the data that was frozen on grch37.ensembl.org, this will remain on e75.ensembl.org.

Services which will change

This will affect the website, grch37.ensembl.org, the REST API, grch37.rest.ensembl.org, the MySQL database accessible through the Perl API, ensembldb.ensembl.org:3337, and also BioMart grch37.ensembl.org/biomart/martview. Of these, all are available on the up-to-date database, and all but the REST API are available on the e75 archive.

We know that some people do use the grch37.ensembl.org website for accessing non-human species, which is why we’re letting you know about this at the earliest stage. We hope that the alternatives described above will be suitable, but if you are concerned that this may cause problems with your work, please email us and we will see if we can find a solution for you. Nothing is set in stone yet, so we will listen to any objections.