First let us know about what a database is. A
database is a structured collection of data or records that are stored in a
computer. A database helps us to organize the data and makes it available any time.
Bioinformatics is the field of
computerizing biological data. Since the
discovery of the DNA and other biological discoveries, a huge amount of research
into macro, middle, and micro level research has been unleashed the world over.
This has helped to make new drugs and aided to further research to unlock the millions of biological substances, sequences, functions and uses. Thus an
initiative was launched by researchers world wide to establish an “internet" data base, located at
different parts of the world, which would log all the research done so far
and make it available to other researchers across the world. And they in turn would add their own discoveries
or observations on the subject. Thus the database is a ever growing one, and as
yet, its size is best defined as INFINITE.
databases contain all the important information needed by the user. They
provide everything important and contain all the appropriate information
needed. The concept of databases in bioinformatics is used mainly to integrate data. Data integration is one of the main and important concepts of
these databases help researchers anywhere to access the data of other
researchers and then use that database to extract the information required for
the specific research being performed.
Databases are usually created by using
Oracle/SQL or MS-Access. The data sources of bioinformatics often have large
and complex structures reflecting the richness of scientific concepts. Many of
the bioinformatic data sources contain information such as genes, proteins,
sequence annotations or micro array results. Data sources more often than
not have similar or overlapping elements, using conflicting
Generally, the data files are quite messy.
They miss commas, blank lines and may contain bizarre head lines. To avoid this
we use XML files. If a database is created, it is easy to have back up of all
the files. You can modify your entry by different commands.
It is worse to handle binary data files.
They are quite tough to handle and are also confusing. So, to get rid of all
this confusing stuff we usually create databases. There are many data access
methods such as using linear, hash and Btree etc. Many other data indexing
techniques are present to improve access. There are many kinds of databases
such as flat-file, hierarchical, network, relational, object etc. SQL provides
different commands for manipulation of data in a database. It has different
commands such as INSERT, UPDATE, CREATE, and others to manipulate data.