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Omic Technologies

[Harvard University - World Book]


- Overview

The branches of science known informally as omics are various disciplines in biology whose names end in the suffix -omics, such as genomics, proteomics, metabolomics, and glycomics. Omics aims at the collective characterization and quantification of pools of biological molecules that translate into the structure, function, and dynamics of an organism or organisms. 

The related suffix -ome is used to address the objects of study of such fields, such as the genome, proteome or metabolome respectively. The suffix -ome as used in molecular biology refers to a totality of some sort; it is an example of a "neo-suffix" formed by abstraction from various Greek terms in -ωμα, a sequence that does not form an identifiable suffix in Greek. 

Functional genomics aims at identifying the functions of as many genes as possible of a given organism. It combines different -omics techniques such as transcriptomics and proteomics with saturated mutant collections.


- Assimilation and Integration of OMIC Technologies

Assimilation and integration of omic technologies, including genomics, epigenomics, proteomics, and metabolomics has readily altered the landscape of medical research in the last decade. The vast and complex nature of omics data can only be interpreted by linking molecular information at the organismic level, forming the foundation of systems biology. 

For example, research in pulmonary biology/medicine has necessitated integration of omics, network, systems and computational biology data to differentially diagnose, interpret, and prognosticate pulmonary diseases, facilitating improvement in therapy and treatment modalities. This research topic describes how to leverage this emerging technology in understanding pulmonary diseases at the systems level called a systemic approach. 

Considering the operational wholeness of cellular and organ systems, diseased genome, proteome, and the metabolome needs to be conceptualized at the systems level to understand disease pathogenesis and progression. Currently available omics technology and resources require a certain degree of training and proficiency in addition to dedicated hardware and applications, making them relatively less user friendly for the pulmonary biologist and clinicians. Herein, The various strategies, computational tools and approaches are required to study pulmonary diseases at the systems level for biomedical scientists and clinical researchers. 



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