Nature Reviews Genetics 9, 678-688 (September 2008) | doi:10.1038/nrg2414

Towards a cyberinfrastructure for the biological sciences: progress, visions and challenges

Lincoln D. Stein1  About the author


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Biology is an information-driven science. Large-scale data sets from genomics, physiology, population genetics and imaging are driving research at a dizzying rate. Simultaneously, interdisciplinary collaborations among experimental biologists, theorists, statisticians and computer scientists have become the key to making effective use of these data sets. However, too many biologists have trouble accessing and using these electronic data sets and tools effectively. A 'cyberinfrastructure' is a combination of databases, network protocols and computational services that brings people, information and computational tools together to perform science in this information-driven world. This article reviews the components of a biological cyberinfrastructure, discusses current and pending implementations, and notes the many challenges that lie ahead.

Author affiliations

  1. Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, 1 Bungtown Road, Cold Spring Harbor, New York 11724, USA.
    Ontario Institute for Cancer Research, 101 College Street, Toronto, Ontario M5G 1L7, Canada.


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