The course surveys the major areas of bioinformatics, exploring the history of bioinformatics in relation to advances in computing hardware and software; the biological problems currently being addressed using bioinformatics; and future applications of bioinformatics. Major topics include genomics; genome sequencing projects; proteomics; structural genomics; systems biology; phylogeny; medical informatics; and commercial applications of bioinformatics. The general nature of the data, computational problems and the approaches employed will be discussed in each case. Bioinformatics will be discussed both as a scientific discipline and as an engineering discipline. The course will also explore the role of bioinformatics in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries and ethical issues associated with biological data. Lectures are supplemented by practical exposure to public and commercial bioinformatics web sites and to commonly used bioinformatics software.
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