|Skills needed for Introduction to Bioinformatics|
Some prior knowledge is needed to complete the course successfully. The Net Tutor can provide only minimal guidance in the very basic biological background or in setting up your computer system for the course.
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Understanding the following concepts is needed for a full appreciation of this course:
• genome, DNA, RNA, base pairing
• genes, transcription, exons, introns, RNA splicing, mRNA
• translation, genetic code, codons, reading frames
• point mutation, deletion, insertion
• amino acids, polypeptides, proteins
• similarities and differences between amino acids
• abbreviations of the amino acids (you must have a source to look them up)
• protein secondary structure, protein folding
If many of them are sound strange to you, be prepared
to spend some time studying the basics as you find yourself needing the information
during the course. Any modern textbook of biochemistry, molecular biology
or molecular cell biology would be a sufficient reference work.
For instance, Biochemistry by Berg, Tymoczko & Stryer (W.H. Freeman, 2002), Chapters 1, 3, 4, 5, and 6 in Part I, would cover what you need to know. An on-line version is available.
You may also take a look at our collection of background reading or web education resources at PDB.
You should be familiar with:
• Internet browsers
• sending e-mail and attaching files to e-mail
• copying and pasting data from one application to another
• word processing to produce a final report of your project
• basic ideas of databases
In addition, you should be able to download and install helper applications, or have someone to help you do that.