BIOL 592 (Fall)

Integrated Bioinformatics

P. Harrison (Coordinator)
(514) 398-6420
3 credits (3-0-6)
BIOL 301 (or equivalent) or permission
Not open to students who are taking, or have taken, BINF 511

This course is an integrated overview of bioinformatics, primarily for biology students. We will cover a range of bioinformatics methods that are useful for the experimental biologist to aid in interpretation of data and experimental design. We will work through some specific examples, primarily using internet-based tools. The course is also useful as an introduction for students wishing to progress to further study in bioinformatics.

Topics will be as follows:
1. Introduction to databases
-Basic tips for use of bioinformatics tools and manipulation of bioinformatics data on the computer.

2. Sequence alignment and database searching for homologs.
3. Gene annotations and how to interpret them; ‘next-generation’ sequencing data.
4. Annotation of non-coding DNA: transposable elements, pseudogenes and RNAs.
5. Comparing genomes
6. Networks and pathways of proteins and genes
7. Classifications of protein function and their use for analyzing data sets of genes/proteins.
8. Annotating and examining features in proteins (protein domains, motifs, disordered regions)

List of papers, to be assigned during the course. Some documents supplementary to lecture slides will also be distributed.
There are two 1.5 hour lecture, demonstration or discussion sessions per week. The demonstration sessions are for bioinformatics tools on the internet, or which can be installed on a computer. There are six short take-home assignments, based on the lecture material. Students are asked to make a 15-minute presentation on a bioinformatics paper that they can choose from a list provided, or which they can pick for themselves.
Assignments, presentation and class participation    

McGill University values academic integrity. Therefore all students must understand the meaning and consequences of cheating, plagiarism and other academic offences under the Code of Student Conduct and Disciplinary Procedures (see for more information).

Last update: March 22, 2017