Glossary

A    B    C    D    E    F    G    H    I    J    K    L    M    N    O    P    Q    R    S    T    U    W    X    Y    Z



A

Annotation
Explanatory or additional contextual information added to database records. For example, a DNA sequence may be annotated with information about the species it came from and the geographical location from which it was collected.




B

Benchmarking
A set of techniques for assessing the performance of a software tool.

BILS
Swedish Bioinformatics Infrastructure for Life Sciences.

Biobank
A type of bio-depository where organized collection of biological samples are stored.

Biomolecular data
Information that helps researchers to understand biology at a molecular level, such as DNA sequences and protein structures.

Bioinformatics
The science of collecting, organising and analysing large amounts of biological information, particularly that relating to the molecules of life.




C

Cloud-based computing
Location-independent computing, in which the user accesses software and data through the internet.

Core data resources
Data collections that are of fundamental importance for life-science research, and to which other data collections need to refer. They often include primary data.

Curation
The quality control, maintenance and organisation of a collection or database.




D

DNA
An acronym for Deoxyribonucleic acid




E

EDAM
An ontology of concepts that are prevalent within bioinformatics, including types of data and data identifiers, data formats, operations and topics. It is made up of a set of terms with synonyms and definitions. It is suitable for large-scale semantic annotations, categorization of diverse bioinformatics resources, for example resource registries.

e-infrastructure
Computers, data storage and networking.

ELIXIR
Life Science Infrastructure for Biological Information.

Elixir
The word "elixir" originates from Arabic al-iksir "the philosopher's stone," probably from late Greek xerion "powder for drying wounds," from xeros "dry".

ERIC
The European Research Infrastructure Consortium (ERIC) is a new legal form designed to facilitate the joint establishment and operation of research facilities of European interest.




H

HPA
An acronym for Human Protein Atlas. The HPA program is a scientific research program with the goal to explore the whole human proteome using an antibody-based gene-centric approach with the effort to map and characterise a representative protein for each protein-coding human gene.




I

ISBE
An acronym for Infrastructure for Systems Biology Europe.




L

Load balancing
A means for sharing computational work among computers.




M

Mouse clinic
A lab that specialises in finding out which characteristics are associated with genetic variations in mice. These can then be correlated with equivalent variations in humans.




N

NeIC
An acronym for Nordic e-Infrastructure Collaboration. NeIC is a organisation that consists of technical experts from academic high-performance computing centres across the Nordic countries.

NeLS
An acronym for Norwegian e-infrastructure for Life Science. NeLS is developed by the Norwegian ELIXIR node.




O

Omics
A generic name for high-throughput technologies in biology such as genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics and metabolomics.

Ontology
Within computer science and information science, an ontology is a rigorous and exhaustive system for representing entities and the relationships between them.




P

PDB
The Protein Data Bank (PDB) contains information about experimentally determined structures of proteins, nucleic acids, and complex assemblies.

Primary database
A database consisting of data that were derived experimentally, such as DNA and RNA sequences or three-dimensional structures. The data in primary databases are considered to belong to the person who submitted them, and cannot be modifi ed by a third party.




R

Registries
Databases for storing information about computer systems.

RNA
An acronym for Ribonucleic acid.




S

Secondary database
A database containing information derived from primary data, for example, translations of DNA sequences into protein sequences.

Server
A computer that is dedicated to providing a specific service.

Specialised data collections
Data collections that are used by a specialist community of researchers (for example, researchers studying a particular organism or disease), rather than to the research community at large. Specialised data collections often refer back to core data resources.

SQL
An acronym for Structured Query Language, a programming language used for retrieving records or parts of records in (relational) databases, and performing various calculations before displaying the results. It is able to accommodate logical operators.

Structural Biology Laboratory
A lab that specialises in determining the three-dimensional shapes (structures) of proteins and other large molecules. This often provides important clues as to the function of the molecule.

System Biology
An inter-disciplinary field concerned with the study of systems of biological components - which may be molecules, cells, organisms or entire species - and their complex interactions.




T

Terabytes
1,000,000,000,000 bytes.

Tryggve
Name of a project aiming at establishing a Nordic platform for collaboration on sensitive data. It is funded by NeIC and the Danish, Finnish, Norwegian and Swedish ELIXIR nodes, and it runs from 2014 to 2017. The Nordic word "tryggve" originates from the Old Norse "tryggr", which means "trusty, faithful, true, safe".