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While the full power of the Beacon API can be unlocked through the use of structured queries using JSON serialization ("POST" requests), the majority of common queries can be implemented through standard query URLs with parameters (GET queries).

Beacon API URL structure

Beacon REST paths in general follow the format




A typical example would e.g. the request to retrieve all genomic variants associated with a biosample

REST Endpoint Definitions

The endpoind paths available for a given Beacon instance are defined in __APIroot__/beaconMap/ Github

POST requests

In POST requests queries and metadata are defined in JSON objects as specified in the model supported by the Beacon instance. For more information see

GET queries

By default the Beacon model supports a limited set of query parameters, most notably such addressing genomic variations. Examples can be found in the Genomic Queries documentation and in the requests section of the default model.

List parameters in GET queries

Several of the common query parameters have a multiple value option, i.e. are assumed to be lists. A typical use case here would be the construction of Bracket Queries which use 2 of each start and end values.

Use a comma , separator for list values in GET

Due to the problem of some web frameworks with the interpretation of multiple values for the same parameter we recommend the consistant use of a single parameter name and comma-concatenated values.

  • &start=1234000&start=5234000
  • &start=1234000,5234000