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Information visualization in systems biology

: Biermann, S.; Gu, Y.; Uhrmacher, A.

Rostocker Informatik-Berichte (2005), Nr.29, S.5-17
ISSN: 0233-0784
Fraunhofer IGD ()
information visualization; biological process; molecular modeling

Information visualization exploits the phenomenal abilities of human visual perception by presenting abstract data visually. In doing so, exploring the data, getting insights and drawing conclusions is effectively supported by visual means. Systems biology involves the application of experimental, theoretical, and modeling techniques to the study of biological organisms at all levels, e.g. molecular and cellular. Its aim is to understand biological processes as whole systems instead of as isolated parts. The analysis of cellular systems is hampered by the amount and fuzziness of experimental data, the amount of factors that have a potential effect on the phenomena of interest and by the heterogeneity of processes e.g. with respect to time scale involved. Therefore, diverse information visualization methods are required that support the knowledge gathering process in systems biology. Based on a brief overview about used visualization techniques in systems biology, we introduce a visual interface for exploring complex structures of multi-level models.