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Genome Res. 2001 Sep;11(9):1603-10.

Argus--a new database system for Web-based analysis of multiple microarray data sets.

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Center for Excellence in Vascular Biology, Vascular Research Division, Department of Pathology, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts 02115, USA.


The ongoing revolution in microarray technology allows biologists studying gene expression to routinely collect >10(5) data points in a given experiment. Widely accessible and versatile database software is required to process this large amount of raw data into a format that facilitates the development of new biological insights. Here, we present a novel microarray database software system, named Argus, designed to process, analyze, manage, and publish microarray data. Argus imports the intensities and images of externally quantified microarray spots, performs normalization, and calculates ratios of gene expression between conditions. The database can be queried locally or over the Web, providing a convenient format for Web-publishing entire microarray data sets. Searches for regulated genes can be conducted across multiple experiments, and the integrated results incorporate images of the actual hybridization spots for artifact screening. Query results are presented in a clone- or gene-oriented fashion to rapidly identify highly regulated genes, and scatterplots of expression ratios allow an individual ratio to be interpreted in the context of all data points in the experiment. Algorithms were developed to optimize response times for queries of regulated genes. Supporting databases are updated easily to maintain current gene identity information, and hyperlinks to the Web provide access to descriptions of gene function. Query results also can be exported for higher-order analyses of expression patterns. This combination of features currently is not available in similar software. Argus is available at

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