By Wendell Jones, Ph.D., Principal Bioinformaticist and Scientific Advisor, Q2 Solutions
Bioinformatics is heavily used in translational medicine, the study of nucleic acids (DNA/RNA/smRNA), pharmacogenomics, proteomics and other areas of cellular biology. Common features of bioinformatics application areas include highly parallelized data processing, quantitative and comparative analysis, data management, dimension reduction and classification, merging and coordinating initially disparate data sets, assembly (of genomes), and distilling information in useful visualizations, graphs and tables. Bioinformatics data contexts are often large and span whole genomes or transcriptomes for potentially hundreds to tens of thousands of subjects.
The field of bioinformatics offers exciting and effective ways to support the development of precision medicine and immunooncology therapies. Problems in genomics are often high dimensional, commonly involving large disparate datasets. To successfully navigate through the data and noise, organizations depend on trained bioinformaticists who understand the molecular biology context, can resolve data conflicts, process large data sets in a timely fashion, overcome multiple testing challenges, and consult with lead scientists to provide comprehensive solutions, especially in the pre-clinical testing and clinical trials areas.