Genomics Research

At its heart, genomics research requires:
  1. A biological question
  2. DNA or protein sequences
  3. Computational methods to analyze the sequence data
  4. A critical researcher to evaluate the results and connect the results to larger picture

The Aiptasia Explorer will help you develop genomics research questions and get you started analyzing genomics data by guiding you through different strategies. You can start with any one of the strategies. As you get more comfortable with the data, you'll find yourself combining strategies to ask and answer more sophisticated questions.

The Explorer has several features to facilitate your research

  1. Information in the form of pages that organize
    1. Bioinformatic Tools and Resources
    2. Research Strategies and
    3. Research Questions
  2. An embedded electronic lab notebook to record your data, ponderings, hypotheses, and conclusions
  3. An embedded question-and-answer function that provides to address specific questions. The question mark icon (in blue) marks a question that will help you think through your research. Answer them when you feel that they will help focus your thinking. You can answer the question multiple times at different stages of your research. I will use your answers to help assess your understanding.
As you explore web resources that take you away from this interface, be sure to come back and record your progress in your lab notebook.

In this project, we will focus on one biological system -- corals and other symbiotic cnidarians -- as your entryway into becoming an independent genomics researcher.

In order to get started, you will need to begin thinking about what aspects of coral biology or symbiosis you find interesting, and then find and read research papers on that topic. Once you have this additional background information, you can begin developing a a research question that addresses a specific aspect of coral symbiosis or biology.
Once you have a sense of your research question you can think about how you might use genomic data to approach your research question. Use the Research Strategies link to help you think about how different approaches might be useful (or not) for your question. Then explore the Sequence Data and Bioinformatic tools in the Resources link to begin finding and analyzing DNA sequence data.

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