Bioinformatics is a discipline found at the crossroads of biology , computer science and new technologies .
It is characterized by the application of mathematical, statistical, computational methods to the analysis of biological, biochemical and biophysical data.
The main subject of study is DNA, but with the spread of increasingly cheaper and more effective techniques for studying proteins, even the latter have become one of the favorite topics of bioinformatics.
The object of work of bioinformatics is the computer, which it uses to collect, consult, analyze biological data in order to understand biological mechanisms.
Three main sub-sectors can be identified:
- development and implementation of tools to store, analyze and manage information;
- analysis and interpretation of data to identify relevant information (for example, look for the recurrence of certain sequences in different genes or build three-dimensional models of proteins from the protein sequence);
- development of new algorithms and statistical tools to verify the relationships between a large number of objects considered (for example, given the results of analysis of one hundred thousand DNA sequences with a microarray , automatically grouping them according to behavior)