ISA – standards-compliant data management tools

Standards compliant data management tools for experimental descriptions

The Investigation / Study / Assay (ISA) metadata tracking framework provides a tool kit to facilitate standards compliant collection, curation and local management of experiments used by an increasingly diverse set of life science groups world-wide. See the ISA Commons ( for details.

The open source ISA metadata tracking tools help to manage an increasingly diverse set of life science, environmental and biomedical experiments that employing one or a combination of technologies.

Built around the ‘Investigation’ (the project context), ‘Study’ (a unit of research) and ‘Assay’ (analytical measurement) general-purpose Tabular format, the ISA tools helps you to provide rich description of the experimental metadata (i.e. sample characteristics, technology and measurement types, sample-to-data relationships) so that the resulting data and discoveries are reproducible and reusable.

The tools allow researchers to:

  • Collect and curate, following standards
  • Store and browse, locally or publicly
  • Submit to public repositories
  • Analyse with existing tools
  • Visualise the experimental design
  • Release, reason and nanopublish
  • Publish data along your article

The e-Research Centre’s members involved in this project are:

Philippe Rocca-Serra, Eamonn Maguire, Alejandra Gonzalez-Beltran and Susanna-Assunta Sansone.

The ISA framework is also part of the COSMOS and Metagenomics Data Infrastructure projects.

For more details please email Susanna-Assunta Sansone or visit