edX DNA Sequences: Alignments and Analysis

University System of Maryland via edX

  • Overview
  1. edX
    University System of Maryland
    8 to 10 hours per week
    8 weeks
    Paid Certificate Available
    Part of:
    MicroMasters Program: Bioinformatics
    Gene sequences and the rest of the genome play an important role in determining how an organism functions normally and reacts when situations change. DNA sequences can also be used to determine relationships between organisms and form the underpinnings of the Tree of Life.

    Since DNA sequences play such an important role in any organism it should not be surprising that any changes to a sequence could lead to alterations in behavior or response. For example, a small number of specific changes in DNA sequence have been shown to lead to tumor development in mammals or the production of enzymes with altered properties.

    One of the jobs of a bioinformatician is to help determine where these changes are in a DNA sequence and sort out in that context what effects may result, which is usually done by aligning the sequences in question.

    In this course, part of the Bioinformatics MicroMasters program, you will learn about the theory and algorithms behind DNA alignments, practice doing alignments manually, and then perform more complicated alignments using web and software based approaches.

    What you'll learn
    • Synthesize and analyze biological big data
    • Theory behind alignment algorithms and how they operate
    • Examine the roles mutations play on cellular processes
    Taught by
    Dr. James Coker

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