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Biotechniques. 2009 Apr;46(5):351-2, 354-5. doi: 10.2144/000113137.

The era of 'omics unlimited.

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Department of Basic Medical Sciences, College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific, Western University of Health Sciences, Pomona, CA 91766, USA.


Determining the primary sequences of informational macromolecules is no longer a limiting factor for our ability to completely understand the biological functioning of cells and organisms. Similarly, our understanding of transcriptional regulation (transcriptomics) has been greatly enhanced by the availability of microarrays. Our next hurdle is to learn the biochemical functions of all the gene products (proteomics) and the totality of all the interactions among them (interactomics). Using traditional biochemical methods, this will take a very long time. More efficient methods are needed to address these questions, or at least to suggest possible candidates for further testing. High-resolution imaging using molecule-specific tags will reveal details of cellular architecture that are expected to provide additional insights and clues about the interactions and functions of many gene products. Computer modeling of macromolecular structures and functional systems will be of key importance. We present here a brief historical and futuristic perspective of genomics and some of its other 'omics offshoots in the post-genomic era.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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