The next meta-challenge for Bioinformatics

Bioinformation. 2008 May 29;2(8):358-62. doi: 10.6026/97320630002358.


The direct sequencing of uncultivable organisms present in complex biological and environmental samples has opportunities to discover new life forms and metabolic processes. This transformational field, known as metagenomics, is generating massive amounts of molecular information that can overwhelm the performance of conventional analysis and visualization algorithms. Here, I briefly highlight some of the emerging challenges this new discipline presents to the computational biology community and point some of the opportunities to develop applications that can translate metagenomic information into biomedical, agricultural, environmental, and industrial applications.

Keywords: enterprise database; genomic barcoding; high performance computing; metagenomics.