Bioinformatics and Genomics for Information Retrieval

*09:00am-12:30pm, 14:00pm-17:30pm*

Presenters: William Hersh and Hugh Williams

William Hersh is Professor and Chair of the Department of Medical Informatics & Clinical Epidemiology at Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU) in Portland, Oregon, USA. He also serves as Chair of the Text Retrieval Conference (TREC) Genomics Track. Dr. Hersh has published over 80 scientific papers and is author of the book, Information Retrieval: A Health and Biomedical Perspective, Second Edition (Springer-Verlag, 2003). He also serves on the Editorial Board of several journals: International Journal of Medical Informatics, Information Processing and Management, Information Retrieval, Health Information & Libraries Journal, and Medical Decision Making. He is also a member of TREC Program Committee.

Hugh Williams is a Senior Software Design Engineer at MSN Search. His most significant research contribution has been to show that the index-based techniques used in search engines can be applied successfully to searching DNA and protein databases. These new techniques are almost as accurate as other approaches, while being an order of magnitude faster and significantly more scalable with the exponentially-increasing size of genome databases. He delivered a tutorial at the 2002 ACM SIGIR on Genomic Information Retrieval, and is guest editor of a recent issue of the ACM Transactions on Information Systems on the same topic. Dr. Williams has published over 50 papers on IR.


The learning objectives for the tutorial include:

  1. Understand the definitions of bioinformatics terms
  2. Understand the core of molecular biology and the new biotechnologies that have advanced the science
  3. Understand the motivations, principles, and applications of sequence searching
  4. Understand the genomic information resources
  5. Describe the application of information retrieval in molecular biology

The tutorial is organized around these objectives. The presentation is didactic, with Powerpoint slides, although interaction and discussion will be encouraged throughout the tutorial. The day-long tutorial is roughly divided into three parts: basic understanding of genomics and bioinformatics, sequence searching, and IR resources and access in genomics.

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