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Biological Sciences
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April 2005

PNNL sponsors seminar at annual AAAS meeting on high-throughput biological data

Karin Rodland, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, organized an seminar titled "Inundated with Data: The '-OMICS' Problem," for the annual American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) meeting held February 17-21, 2005,in Washington, D.C., The seminar was attended by more than 110 people—standing room only. Among those in attendance was Dan Drell, DOE-BER's Life Sciences Division.

The focus of the seminar was on the potential impact of high-throughput biology—the newest technical trend in the life sciences—to change research in the same way as the recombinant biology revolution of the 1970s and 1980s. The "-omics" explosion simply refers to capturing of data on all the different molecules that can now be measured accurately and rapidly: genes, mRNA, proteins, metabolites, sugars, lipids, and more. The seminar explored the questions of what to do with all these data once you have them, the technological challenges of determining the data quality, storing and transmitting data, and integrating data types.

Speakers for the seminar included PNNL's George Michaels with the presentation "Bioinformatics: Making Sense of the Flood of Proteomic Data," and Rodland, whose presentation was entitled "The -OMICS Revolution: How Many Different Things Can you Measure?" The entire list of speakers and topics is at
. This was the second year in a row that Rodland has organized a seminar on proteomics at AAAS.

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