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Application: Bioinformatics

Proteomics-the analysis of life's complete complement of proteins-is the next wave of biology. It requires not only the identification and quantification of all proteins in the biosphere, but also the determination of their localization within cells, modifications, interactions, activities-and ultimately, their function.

This task will require access to massive amounts of computational power and storage capacity. Even the initial step-protein identification and function, involving protein interactions and pathways-is daunting.

Grid computing is an essential tool to support this revolution in post-genomic science, providing access to unparalleled levels of computational and data resources. Substantial amounts of work have already been undertaken in this area including, for example, the Computational Extension portal, which has led to new biological understanding through providing access to Grid computing for comparison of the 3D structure of proteins. However, individual researchers or institutions do not have access to the integrated resources necessary to bring about major increases in understanding and improvements in health outcomes.

WUN's unique strengths in this area include centres of excellence in computational science and informatics, and biological sciences and their integration. Several WUN partners are national leaders in bioinformatics and Grid computing. Progress in this area-more than any other-requires a collaborative effort and significant resources beyond the scale and scope of any single institution.

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Last updated 24 January 2005.