Welcome to ABC - the Applied Bioinformatics Course!
As inspired by Walter Gilbert's 1991
"We must hook our individual computers into the worldwide network that gives
us access to daily changes in the database and also makes immediate our
communications with each other", this course is designed for wet-lab
experimental graduate students in biology.
What we learn
We'll learn, step by step, the ABCs of:
How to find literature papers from PubMed efficiently
How to search databases such as UniProt and RefSeq in an Advance mode
How to align your DNA and protein sequences
How to make a good Blast search to obtain your results with less false
positive and false negative
How to analyze your own DNA or protein sequences with various tools
How to construct a phylogenetic tree for a set of sequences at your hand
How to predict the three dimensional structure of your favorite protein
And lots more!
How we learn
We will run the course in a training room. Each student will have a PC
connected into the Internet.
We start with introducing the international
bioinformatics resources around the world, for example,
We then use the
bioinformatics platform developed by
to get familiar with dozens of bioinformatics tools through hands-on practice.
We will do a lot of exercises
for sequence alignment, database similarity search, motif finding,
gene prediction, as well as phylogenetic tree construction and molecular
Finally, we will focus on several
to solve real biological problems.
You are encouraged to bring your own problems to discuss and, hopefully,
to solve during the course!
You may read
a brief introduction
(in Chinese) of the course, or read the article
Teaching the ABC of Bioinformatics
(in English), or
(in Chinese) for more details.
What you need before the course
A desktop PC or laptop hooked to the Internet. You may also use iPad or mobile
phone to browse most of the pages.
A good background of biochemistry and molecular biology - you may try the
Biotest_Cn (in Chinese) or
BioTest_En (in English)
to see how good at it you are.
An ability to read the English text such as this page, and understand the
At least three hours every week to have group discussions and to stick
on the Internet to do
What you gain from the course
Don't expect to become a bioinformatics expert at the end of the course,
but you will believe what Alan Bleseby, one of the major developer of the
EMBOSS package, indicated two decades ago:
Half day on the Web, saves you half month in the lab!