Bioinformatics module overview - Computing


Oct 4, 2013 (4 years and 9 months ago)


Overview of Bioinformatics

Denis Manley.

Contact Details

Lecturer Name: Denis Manley

Room number: KE

Email :


Phone: 01 402 4949

What is bioinformatics

Bioinformatics is the use of computers and computational
methods to analyse large sets of molecular biological data
that is used for :

The investigation of “living organisms” and their evolution.

The discovery of
genes, gene
genetic networks and
functionality, which can be used to understand: human
disease; human development (conception to adulthood)


the results of which can facilitate our understanding of diseases
like cystic fibrosis; suggest therapies; and the development of
cures such as drug development, viral therapy…

Bioinformatics is one of the fastest growing areas in
computing and is only set to increase as it is now starting to
produce information that facilitates our understanding and
the development of cures for many diseases.

The module syllabus.

Part 1:

Introduction to fundamental genetics:

Cell Biology: the Cell; cellular states and organism development

Genes, inheritance and evolution

Molecular cell biology: DNA and proteins.

The central “dogma” of Genetics: DNA

Gene “expression” regulation

Part 2

Basic introduction to PERL: a common scripting language
used in the field of bioinformatics

Basic bioinformatics related data structures

Pattern matching techniques: the basics of sequence matching and
bioinformatics files manipulation

What is bioinformatics

Part 3

Computational methods used in bioinformatics

Techniques , including Artificial intelligent techniques, used
to match gene and protein sequences and measure their
similarity… ; this is then used in:

Analysing and determining the evolution of life ;

Determining the steps in human development as well as that in
other organisms including bacteria, viruses… ;

Analysing and understanding the development of disease such as
malignancy, bacterial/viral infection; e.g.

and many others
as well as possibly suggesting ways of combating them.

Determining the protein structure and the subsequent protein
synthesis; including the development of drugs related to the
disease whose origins are understood; e.g. from the above
research in to disease development.

Assignment and exam

1 Assignment:

Based on writing a simple program to analyse DNA/AA
data and discuss the findings in order to determine;
e.g. potential functionality/ potential structure….

Exam: question 1 + 2 out of 4 other question

Question 1 compulsory: using

to analyse DNA

Other questions related to areas the module and will
take the form of discussions