Bioinformatics is an interdisciplinary field that develops methods and software tools for understanding biological data. Common uses of bioinformatics include the identification of candidate genes and nucleotides (SNPs). The field of bioinformatics has evolved such that the most pressing task now involves the analysis and interpretation of various types of data. This includes nucleotide and amino acid sequences, protein domains, and protein structures. The actual process of analyzing and interpreting data is referred to as computational biology. The primary goal of bioinformatics is to increase the understanding of biological processes. Examples include pattern recognition, data mining, machine learning algorithms, and visualization. Major research efforts in the field include sequence alignment, drug discovery, protein structure alignment, protein structure prediction, prediction of gene expression and protein-protein interactions, etc..
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