SOURCE: U.S. Department of Energy, Report on the Computer Science Workshop for the Genomes to Life Program, Gaithersburg, MD, March 6-7, 2002; available at http://DOEGenomesToLife.org/compbio/.
These examples are drawn largely from the area of cell biology. The reason is not that these are the only good examples of computational tools, but rather that a great deal of the activity in the field has been the direct result of trying to make sense out of the genomic sequences that have been collected to date. As noted in Chapter 2, the Human Genome Project—completed in draft in 2000—is arguably the first large-scale project of 21st century biology in which the need for powerful information technology was manifestly obvious. Since then, computational tools for the analysis of genomic data, and by extension data associated with the cell, have proliferated wildly; thus, a large number of examples are available from this domain.
As noted in Chapter 3, data integration is perhaps the most critical problem facing researchers as they approach biology in the 21st century.
Sections 4.2.1, 4.2.4, 4.2.6, and 4.2.8 embed excerpts from S.Y. Chung and J.C. Wooley, “Challenges Faced in the Integration of Biological Information,” in Bioinformatics: Managing Scientific Data, Z. Lacroix and T. Critchlow, eds., Morgan Kaufmann, San Francisco, CA, 2003. (Hereafter cited as Chung and Wooley, 2003.)