Frequently Asked Questions

How do I obtain a GIGPAD account?

To request a login to GIGPAD, access the GIGPAD application by going to and click on the 'here' link in 'Click here to request a login'.

  • Principal Investigators (PIs) - Click on 'I am a principal investigator' and click 'Submit'. Fill out your information and click 'Submit Access Request'.
  • Researchers - Click on 'I am a researcher who works for one or more principal investigators' and 'Submit'. Fill out your information as well as the information for your PI(s) and click 'Submit Access Request'.

Within a few hours you will receive a temporary password. Upon logging in again you may change the password. We ask that you not share this password and login with any others please. From this point you may proceed to set up your order or create a Study to contain multiple associated orders.

Once I have an account, how do I access GIGPAD?

Access GIGPAD by going to


How do I change my account information?

Please send your new account information to our Support Team ( It is not possible for you to update your account information online.


Why should I use a study?

All of the PCPGM facilities, with the exception of DNA Sequencing and Microarray, require the creation of a study in GIGPAD in order to request services and submit samples.

Studies can be used for different purposes:

  • Grouping of samples for processing or analysis associated with a general IRB number with a unifying theme.
  • Single PI with several investigators associated with the work. Studies allow setting up the PI/investigator(s) relationships and facilitate managing the data captured under the study. If new investigators join later on they can be added to the study and access the data gathered easily.
  • Grouping of control vs. case samples. Investigators can create studies to help them group and organize their samples and data.

GIGPAD users who do not require a study should consider creating a study based on the above criteria. Please contact the manager for the group you will be working with to review your specific use case.


How do I place a study?

To place a study in GIGPAD:

  • Login to GIGPAD, if you do not have a login see "How do I obtain a GIGPAD account?".

  • Go to the Studies->New Study.

  • Select the Facility and PI for the study from the drop down menu (if multiple options are available).

  • Click on 'Next Step Study Definition'.

  • Fill out the information associated with this study: Study Name, Description and the Associated Researchers and IRB information.

  • The remaining steps are specific to the facility that the study is under, click through these remaining steps and complete any necessary information.

If you need further assistance setting a study for a particular facility, please see our Help Documentation.


How do I get access to a study?

To obtain access to a study, the Principal Investigator (PI) associated with the study must send email to the PCPGM IT Support team ( requesting that you be added to his/her study.


How do I find my saved studies?

Your saved study is located on the 'New Study' screen. Click on the 'Study' tab and then go to the 'New Study' tab. Your saved study will be at the top of the screen, under 'I. Continue a Saved Study'.


Can I place an order without a study?

The only facilities that allow you to create a batch without a study are “Microarrays” and “DNA Sequencing”. For all other facilities you must create a study in order to create a batch.


How can I find my samples?

GIGPAD users must have access to an active PCPGM study in order to find sample details. If you do have access to an active study, you may use one of the following two options to find your samples.

Option 1:

  • Select the ‘Study’ tab
  • Select the ‘Subject/Specimen’ tab
  • Populate the available query filter with all available detail

Option 2 (Study Associated with BioSample Facility at PCPGM):

  • Select the ‘Study’ tab
  • Select the ‘Reports’ tab
  • Select the ‘Specimen Detail’ link under ‘BSF’
  • Populate the available query filter with all available detail


What information do I need to place an order?

There is information that is required for all orders/batches, such as:

  • Facility – Sequencing, Genotyping, Biosample Services, Microarrays, Harvard Catalyst Central Laboratory (HCCL)
  • Order type – Varies by facility
  • PI – Order's owner
  • Primary contact – PI or researcher listed as primary contact
  • Funding type – Fee For Service, Grant Funded, Internal R & D, etc.
  • Sample classification – Research, Other, Unknown
  • Funding source – PO or PeopleSoft Number and allocation for billing purposes

There is also information that will vary depending on the order type and facility, for example:

  • Sample(s) information and details
  • Services requested
  • Shipping information


What is a batch? What is an order?

The terms batch and order are used interchangeably in GIGPAD. A batch is a transactional unit comprised of a collection of samples and services or tests to be applied to these samples. Currently, a study is required in order to place batches for Genotyping and BioSample Facility Services. Microarrays and Sequencing batches can be submitted without a study.

Batches are owned by a Principal Investigator and can be placed by the PI or any Researcher associated with the PI's studies. A batch is identified by a unique number generated upon submission. This number should be used by PI's and Researchers to request information about the batch, such as status, results, data files, etc.