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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Basabi Rana, Ph.D.(Loyola University Stritch School of Medicine)
Description: In general, this book describes some of the most useful and widely used techniques in the field of bioinformatics. With a significant number of contributing authors, it covers a wide variety of topics to satisfy the large audience involved in using and developing bioinformatics. Of particular interest are the clinical correlations and the possible implication of bioinformatics in diagnostics and drug design.
Purpose: As indicated by the editor, the authors of this book provide a "detailed description and implementation advice" for a variety of techniques used in the field of molecular biology. These will be of extreme importance to those involved in utilization and development of bioinformatics methods.
Audience: The book is written for students and beginning level bioinformatics researchers. The authors are authorities in the fields of molecular biology and bioinformatics.
Features: The first section on structures focuses primarily on methods used for prediction of protein structure and classification of protein domains. Section II, on inferring function, includes some of the well established techniques based on homology, "Rosetta stone" method, phylogenetic profiling, and phylogenetic shadowing. It also describes methods for predicting regulatory elements, expression patterns, complex formation, and integration of genomics data. Section III, on applications and disease, contains more applied diagnostic aspects and drug discovery. The topics in this section include the importance of microarray data in diagnostics, combinatorial optimization models for finding genetic signatures from gene expression datasets, and utilization in a rodent model of Parkinson's disease. The final section describes analytical and computational methods, which are composed of meta-methods that could be very important for the users and developers of bioinformatics. Inclusion of more illustrations would facilitate understanding.
Assessment: This is a good reference in the field of bioinformatics, particularly for those who are just starting out.