“The present article lists and explains important resources and tools for research students in genetics, genomics or cancer research.”
Are you a research student? Want to strengthen your research perspective with comprehensive and accurate information, willing to use various computational tools to make your research more understandable and in-depth?
Here I am enlisting some of the important resources/tools/websites, particularly for research students. Almost all resources and tools are free to use. In addition, you can also upload your data and share it with the scientific community.
Related article: Important Websites (or Free Resources) For Beginners to Learn Genetics.
10 Resources for Research Students Working in Genetics
>> Website: NCBI
NCBI is a division of the National Library of Medicine (NLM), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in the United States. Established in 1988, NCBI’s primary mission is to develop innovative methods for the storage, retrieval, and analysis of biological data.
NCBI- National Centre for Biotechnology and Information is a part of the National Library of Medicine (NLM) and belongs to NIH (National Institute of Health). It was founded in 1988 with the mission to provide storage, retrieval, and analysis of biological data.
It’s a kind of biological information and data repository and useful for researchers working in the fields of biotechnology, genetics, genomics and bioinformatics. Students can access information and data, review literature, and use bioinformatic tools, SNP, and genomic analysis.
Key useful features are PubMed, GenBank, BLAST, dbSNP, Entrenz Gene, etc.
NCBI – GenBank
>> Website: GenBank
GenBank is one of the most extensively and widely used genetic information databases, belonging to the NCBI. It was a joint venture and collective developed by the Los Alamos National Laboratory, the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), and the National Institute of General Medical Sciences in 1982.
The sole purpose of developing GenBank was to prepare a centralized and openly accessible genetic sequence or gene information database. It provides information regarding genes, gene sequences, and other related information.
It helps research students with comparative and functional genomic analysis, data mining and retrieval. They can also submit new sequence information and make it available globally.
dbSNP – NCBI
>> Website: dbSNP
We all know the significance of Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms for individual, population and disease studies. dbSNP is a database for Single Nucleotide Polymorphism developed by NCBI.
dbSNP is an extensive database on SNPs that helps researchers study SNPs from various organisms. It helps in GWAS studies genetic variation, and population and clinical genetic studies. They also submit their SNP database to the platform as well.
ExPASy – Proteomics Server
>> Website: ExPASy
ExPASy is another comprehensive bioinformatics database developed by the Swiss Institute of Bioinformatics (SIB), especially for protein analysis. However, it also contains resources for genes and genomics analysis including– genomics, metagenomics, and transcriptomics.
The present resource majorly helps in protein research and proteomic studies, it also contains tools and resources for structural biology, phylogenetics and systemic biology studies.
Genetics Home Reference for Researchers
>> Website: GHR – Researchers
We already discussed the Genomic Home Reference in our previous article. Although now known as Medialin Plus, it’s still a part of the National Library for Medicine. Broadly, it contains information regarding various health-related topics, genes, genetics, genetic conditions and medical tests.
It helps researchers understand fundamentals and medical conditions and related tests.
The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA)
>> Website: TCGA
TCGA- The Cancer Genome Atlas was developed by the National Cancer Institute in collaboration with the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI) in 2005. The present platform is developed to provide a comprehensive database and information on cancer.
It has a genomic data repository for cancer, comprehensive cancer research analysis tools, data sharing and accessibility, clinical data integration and Pan-Cancer analysis facilities.
The present platform is significantly useful for research students doing research in cancer genomics, cancer and precision medicine and characterization of new cancer-causing genes and conditions.
If you are doing research with any of the topics mentioned above, you can definitely visit and use it. By the way, TCGA signifies the 4 nucleotides of DNA.
UCSC Genome Browser
>> Website: UCSC Genome Browser
UCSC genome browser is developed and managed by the University of California and Santa Cruz Genome Institute. Genome browser should be known to every research student doing research in the field of genomics.
It’s a comprehensive and versatile database of humans and other useful genomes for visualizing genomic data. Tools and features like In Silico PCR, Genome Visualization, Multiple Genome Alignment and gene annotation are very beneficial to research.
Besides facilities like custom track uploads and data integration hugely back up research in genomics, epigenetics and functional genomics.
OMIM – Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man
>> Website: OMIM
OMIM- Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man is a comprehensive online database of inherited Mendelian disorders. Dr. Victor A. McKusick initiated MIM in the 1960s and later on became OMIM.
OMIM is more of a search engine for genes (that includes information of more than 16,000 genes) and inherited Mendelian disorders. However, the major objective for developing the present platform is to study the genotype-phenotype relations.
European Bioinformatics Institute:
>> Website: EBI
EBI is part of EMBL- European Molecular Biology Lab and was founded in 1992. It’s a prominent and comprehensive database of bioinformatics. It contains tools for DNA and RNA studies, gene expression, ontology and chemical biology.
ENA- European Nucleotide Archive
>> Website: ENA
Much like the NCBI and ExPASy, the ENA is managed and developed by the European Molecular Biology Lab (EMBL). The platform is designed for nucleotide sequence research and analysis.
Research students working in genetic, genomics, or cancer research should know about these resources/tools and how to use them. However, extensive training is required to use several tools.
I am planning to prepare a tutorial for each source and will try to upload it here or in a separate article or page. Let’s see how it goes! I hope you like this article. Please share it and bookmark this page.