TOOLS: Deconstructing Viruses

Science  05 Aug 2005:
Vol. 309, Issue 5736, pp. 857
DOI: 10.1126/science.309.5736.857e

If you're hunting for tools to analyze virus genomes and proteins, drop by The Viral Bioinformatics Research Center, created by Chris Upton of the University of Victoria in Canada. The site holds sequences for hundreds of viruses in 11 families, such as the Filoviridae, which includes the notorious Ebola virus. You can parse the data using 10 Java tools; for example, the Base by Base program lets users compare viral genome sequences one nucleotide at a time. The site also offers background on the different families, describing their structures, life cycles, and how they hijack cellular activities. To learn more about some viral illnesses, download chapters from an infectious disease text.

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