Tutorial 5: Systems BiologyWeek of March 16thand March 23rdThe sequencing of the human genome in 2001 marked the beginning of a new era in biology that is dominated by two distinct, yet inseparable fields: functional genomics and systems biology. The field of functional genomics seeks to provide an understanding of the function, regulation, and interaction of ALL gene-products in a genome. By its very nature it has relied on techniques (microarray technology, mass spectrometry) that produce vast data sets describing the characteristics (e.g. expression levels, biochemical activity) of the genes/gene-products governing cellular physiology.This explosion of data has necessitated the development of philosophies and techniques – collectively defining the field of systems biology – that are aimed at understanding how the interaction of complex systems of genes/gene-products give rise to phenotypic variability. For example, consider the interactions of the many components of the lac
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