Category Archives: Bioinformatics

Nietzschean toxicology

Although one of my main projects is software for toxicology and toxicogenomics, my background in toxicology is not as strong as in, for example, computer science, and I’m lucky to be able to rely on experienced collaborators. With that said, I’d still like to try to speculate about the field through a mildly Nietzschean lens. Toxicology […]

Interactive toxicogenomics

If you work in toxicology or drug discovery, you might be familiar with the database Open TG-GATEs, a large transcriptomics database that catalogues gene expression response to well-known drugs and toxins. This database was developed by Japan’s Toxicogenomics Project during many years, as a private-public sector partnership, and remains a very valuable resource. As with […]

Synthesis is appropriation

In contemporary society, we make use of the notion that things may be synthetic. Thus we may speak of synthetic biology, “synthesizers” (synthetic sound), synthetic textile etc. Such things are supposed to be artificial and not come from “nature”. However, the Greek root of the word synthesis actually seems to refer to the conjoining of […]

The minimal genome of Craig Venter’s Syn3.0

The J Craig Venter Institute has published a paper detailing the genome of their new Syn3.0 synthetic organism. The major accomplishment was to construct a viable cell with a synthetic, extremely small genome: only 473 genes and about 500 kbp. Even though it is considered to be fully “synthetic”, this genome is not built from […]

Method and object. Horizons for technological biology

(This post is an attempt at elaborating the ideas I outlined in my talk at Bio-pitch in February.) The academic and investigative relationship to biology – our discourse about biology – is becoming increasingly technological. In fields such as bioinformatics and computational biology, the technological/instrumental relationship to nature is always at work, constructing deterministic models of […]