Bioinformatics is an interdisciplinary field that includes biology and other medical sciences, informatics, computer science, mathematics, and statistics to 1) analyze datasets in systems biology and genomics and 2) predict the structure and function of target proteins. BBRI’s Bioinformatics/Computational Chemistry Core provides vital resources for developing and applying new computational and statistical tools in the analysis and interpretation of complex biochemical data.
Computational Chemistry efforts focus on the human cannabinoid (CB) G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs). Physiologically important members of the GPCR family of receptors include chemokine receptors, opioid receptors, adrenergic receptors, and muscarinic acetylcholine receptors. Computational chemists model structural changes in receptors and other proteins that may impact their function.
Bioinformatics & Genomics activities include data mining, Gene Wide Association Study (GWAS) data analysis, comparative genomic analyses, and application/method development. Current projects focus on determinants of obesity and hypertension in African Americans. Using regression, SVM, Random Forests, and Multifactor Dimensionality Reduction, models of disease are constructed using biological, environmental, and psychosocial variables. The resulting systems view of obesity and hypertension enable the generation of new hypotheses and study designs centering on translational outcomes. This core is largely supported by the CTHER program grant (NIH P20 MD000175).