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Information Systems Semantic Web Scientific Databases
Information Systems Semantic Web Scientific Databases
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Scientific Databases

The diversity and large volumes of data processed in the Natural Sciences today has led to a proliferation of highly-specialized scientific databases. Notable examples from biology include Genbank for genes; Swissprot for proteins; Go for functional descriptions of proteins (among other things); Omim for genetic diseases; and Pubmed for publications. New research results are obtained by (1) copying and modifying existing data from other scientific databases; (2) adding data gathered through experiments; and (3) analysing the hence newly constructed scientific database with sophisticated techniques. Once published online, the obtained results can freely be copied into other scientific database after which the whole process repeats itself. The management of such scientific databases has some particular requirements. First of all, there is the obvious need to locate and efficiently query the most pertinent data across the available databases. Furthermore, to ensure the quality and correctness of the stored data, it is vital to record provenance information. This information describes, for instance, from which database a result was copied, how it was modified, or by which analyses and programs it was generated. To prevent incorrect data from being copied, there is also a need for automatic methods to detect and, where possible, correct inconsistencies. Indeed, it has been estimated that one to five percent of the data stored in a typical enterprise database is incorrect. The same analysis applies to scientific databases. In this context, our research focuses on suitable models for defining and automatically tracking provenance, as well as on techniques for improving data quality.

Projects

List of the relevant projects on the thematic area:

  • BioMaze: Software tools enabling the storage, analysis and visualization of biochemical networks

Publications

List of publications concerning this thematic area:


Updated: 2017-03-27