BIF-20306 Introduction to Bioinformatics


Credits 6.00

Teaching methodContact hours
Course coordinator(s)prof. dr. ir. D de Ridder
Lecturer(s)prof. dr. ir. D de Ridder
dr. FT Bakker
dr. S Smit
dr. JJJ van der Hooft
Examiner(s)prof. dr. ir. D de Ridder

Language of instruction:


Assumed knowledge on:

MAT-15403 Statistics 2

Continuation courses:

BIF-51306 Data Analysis and Visualization, BIF-51806 Biological Discovery Through Computation


Note: This course can not be combined in an individual programme with SSB-20306 Bioinformation Technology and/or PBR-34303 Genomics and Bioinformatics

Over the last decades, a number of technologies to study DNA, RNA, proteins, metabolites and their interactions has been developed. To understand life at the molecular level, they have been applied in numerous biological and biomedical experiments. Much of the resulting data, as well as the knowledge gained in these experiments, are freely available for researchers in the form of computer databases and tools. Analysis and interpretation of experimental data in biology increasingly depends on using these bioinformatics methods efficiently and effectively. In this course, students will be given a broad overview of the field of bioinformatics, with a focus on practical application and interpretation of results from tools used in everyday biological research.

Learning outcomes:

After successful completion of this course students are expected to be able to:
- describe the most widely used bioinformatics databases and tools, and explain their applicability;
- apply bioinformatics tools to analyze genome, gene and protein sequences, and critically explain the results;
- interpret the results of computational analyses of high-throughput measurement data;
- choose a combination of databases and tools to analyze data resulting from a real-world biological experiment and motivate the choices.


A number of topics will each be introduced, discussed and lectured, followed by extensive practical work, a project (graded) and exam training.


The final mark is based on intermediate project reports (40%) and an individual written examination (60%). To pass the course, the mark for both should be at least 5.0.


Marketa Zvelebil and Jeremy O. Baum, 'Understanding bioinformatics', Garland Science, 2012, ISBN 978-0815340249 (application chapters only).

Compulsory for: BBIBiologyBScA: Cell and Molecular Biology1MO
BPWPlant SciencesBScA: Plant Genomics and Health1MO
Restricted Optional for: MPBPlant BiotechnologyMSc1MO
MNHNutrition and HealthMScC: Molecular Nutrition and Toxicology1MO
Restricted Optional for: WUBIFBSc Minor Bioinformatics1MO