Structural Bioinformatics is a subgroup of bioinformatics that deals with the analysis of the 3D structure of biological molecules, especially proteins, DNA and RNA. Experimental techniques combined with modeling and computer algorithms are often used to predict the shape of the molecule from basic primary sequence, predict the function based on this elucidated shape and to hypothesize the function of a complex of molecules given each component’s individual shape. For example, structural bioinformatics can be used to predict the shape of individual proteins within a protein-protein interaction, essential to many biological processes, to understand the specificity and molecular interactions between the proteins. Structural bioinformatics not only is necessary for elucidating function from “form”, but for the design of drugs that can be engineered to fit structures of molecules, especially proteins.
The IMB Jena Image Library of Biological Macromolecules from the Institute of Molecular Biotechnology in Jena, Germany is a collection of information and 3D structures of biological macromolecules. This database provides access to all entries in the Protein Data Bank and the Nucleic Acid Database .
Neuropsychiatric Disorders: Speech and Language Disorder. 2007. Photograph. Bioinformatics Tools to Understand Human DiseasesWeb. 27 Aug 2013. <http://www.well.ox.ac.uk/Bioinformatics Tools to understand Human Diseases.htm>.
"Structural bioinformatics." Wikipedia. N.p., 26 Jul 2013. Web. 27 Aug 2013. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Structural_bioinformatics>.
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