Published Date : Apr 14, 2016
Bioinformatics is one of the bigger buzzwords in the field of healthcare IT today. It is an interdisciplinary field where one can develop different kinds of tools and procedures for a better grasp on the incoming biological data from different sources. It is a combination of various key fields, including engineering, mathematics, statistics, computer science, biology, life sciences, and biotechnology. As such, one of the more unique uses of bioinformatics is the use of mathematics and statistics to analyze biological data. Thus, bioinformatics can be the bridge between scientists and the mysteries that surround protein sequences and nucleic acids.
An Increasing Gene Database
Much like the Big Data issues that surround conventional IT fields today, biological fields are also being bombarded by large reservoirs of data that are generated through the study of genes. For instance, in 2000, the repository of GenBank had more than 8 million entries related to protein sequences and nucleic acids. In the same year, SWISS-PROT had registered nearly 89,000 protein sequences. Experts have calculated that these repositories are going to double almost every 15 months. Going by these statistics, the amount of data on sequencing and nucleic acids available should be massive. So much so, that the conventional tools and services being used for the utility of this data are completely outdated.
Human Genome Project
The Human Genome Project was one of the prime reasons for the need of the bioinformatics field. This project was dedicated to finding out the sequence of the base pairs that chemically from the human DNA. It also involves finding out and mapping all aspects of the human genome from the perspectives of functionality as well as physicality. The project had been initiated in 1990 by the United States government and was completed in 2003.
Following the project’s completion, there was a boom in the amount of data that could be generated by multiple biology related fields, giving rise for a need to compile this data in logical patterns.