Monday, April 2, 2012

B is for Bioinformatics!

For today's post I have chosen a subject that is very near and dear to my heart: Bioinformatics. Why is it especially important to me? Bioinformatics is what I am majoring in at University of the Sciences!


Bioinformatics can be described as the application of statistics and computer science to the field of molecular biology. This field of science has many objectives, but they all mainly focus on the discovery of genes and their corresponding proteins. Many believe that bioinformatics is the future of science because the world is moving towards the application of our knowledge on genetics: proteins.

With a degree in bioinformatics an individual can go into many fields such as robotics, biotechnology and pharmaceutical research. My goal is to become a genetic counselor.

Do you know how many genes a human has? Do you know why a plant has more genes than a human but a human is considered a more complex organism?


Cathy Olliffe-Webster said...

I know if I eat too much my genes don't fit... oh, wrong jeans....
SERIOUSLY, how smart are YOU? Glad you're teaching us lesser mortals some important stuff -you go, girl!
And Happy A to Z!

Anna Smith said...

Oh I'd love to know the answer to the last question? :P

Universal Gibberish

Gossip_Grl said...

WOW on your post and I am afraid to even guess at your questions. :)

Hazel said...

Wow you are smart! Such an impressive uni course! And here's me thinking Psychology as a science is hard lol!

Matthew MacNish said...

Such a fascinating, important field!

The Writing Goddess said...

I know we have 46 chromosomes, genes... tens of thousands?

I am glad that people like you are entering this field. So much we need to learn!

Suze said...

What does a genetic counselor do?

Jennifer Macfarlan said...

Cathy - Thanks!! I'm glad people find it interesting :) Your comment made me crack up!

Anna - The answer is very interesting, for me at least. I'm going to post the answer tonight!

Gossip_Grl - Thanks!

Hazel - Some things in psychology are really hard. I think you have to have a certain mind for science.

Matthew - Thanks!

The Writing Goddess - You are correct! We have about 20,000 to 22,000 genes.

Suze - A genetic counselor can analyze the chance of a person getting a genetic disease. They can also do prenatal testing to tell parents the likelihood that their child is going to have a genetic disease.

Sky Luke Corbelli said...

I believe that I've heard humans have got around
Twenty three thousand or so, how right does that sound?
And plant genes are redundant, I mean it, it's true!
They have copies of copies, more than me or you
But that's just from dabbling, I could be way off base
So feel free to put this math major in his place

Jean said...

Good Lord! You are a blessing to have for those of us who have families with genetic problems.
I am so happy I came across your blog. I wish you all luck as a scientist.
As a parent of two children with severe autism and seizures, we have done everything from give blood repeatedly, to answer countless questionnaires,to being filmed by Stanford University in the early days of the autism epidemic.
Thank you for being you.


michelle said...

Gosh, it sounds fascinating and complicated at the same time!
Genetic counselor - what is that?

Enjoy the rest of the challenge!

Jennifer Macfarlan said...

Sky - Both your answers are correct!! Scientists now speculate that humans have somewhere around 20,000 to 22,000 genes. Plants have many more because their genome is highly repetitive! Good job!

Jean - Wow, I'm sorry to hear about the problems :( Thank you for your faith in science. I hope someday to help families like yours.

Michelle - Thanks! A genetic counselor will analyze a person's genome and give them the probability that they may develop a disease. They can also do prenatal testing and give parents the probability of their child having genetic diseases.

Jeremy Bates said...

Biowhat?!Frankly, I have not heard of that field until now. At least you are studying something worthwhile. So many students are squandering the best years of their life on useless majors.

No, I don't know why plants have more genes than humans. Pray tell.

Lynda R Young said...

wow, sounds like a fascinating field to work in.

David Wagner said...

Probably a safe bet to say that no one else on the A-to-Z blog link list had bioinformatics as their word of the day, lol...

Look how unique you are!

Dave the Goof

Huntress said...

Fascinating post. I'll Google 'genetic counselor' for more info.