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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Software Tool for Genomics Research

Technology Description:


ARS researchers have developed a computer tool to help research scientists visualize relationships between and among data.  The technology uses existing relational databases, and provides a means to selectively visualize data clusters to reveal degrees of relatedness between the clusters based on their assigned attributes.  This tool has primarily been used for analyzing genomic data, but may be adaptable for other applications.  Rather than develop singular questions to query a relational database, the display produces a global view of data sets.   It also provides an intuitive environment that allows a researcher to orient decisions based on attributes of the contributing data.  Research decisions made on the data are based on the   clustering patterns of data elements, and are arrayed based on key attributes that can be assigned to the data.  For genomic data, this tool has been instrumental in studying expressed sequence tag (EST) analysis, microarray gene expression analysis, and phylogenetic determination of genome sequences. 


This tool will help biotechnology companies view data relating to gene expression in a different way, and may provide another approach toward gene-mining.  In addition, expression profiles can be sorted based on attributes of species, cultivar, tissue, developmental stage, or stresses.  This technology has the advantage over other similar computer tools in that it allows for all data to be rationalized within a single global display.


This technology will have important commercial use because it may point to previously documented genes for which expression is somewhat understood and may show relationships to new or unrealized gene relationships based on expression profiles and clustering.  This tool can be used in gene-discovery and other biotechnology applications.  However, there may be other applications for this technology beyond the biotech field.




Please refer to USPN 7,475,087 (Docket #0094.03), “Computer Display Tool for Visualizing Relationships Between and Among Data,” which was issued on January 6, 2009.  Foreign rights are not available.




Gerard R. Lazo                                      Nancy Lui

Genomics and Gene Discovery                 Genomics and Gene Discovery Research

Albany, CA  94710                                 University of California-Davis

Phone: (510) 559-5640                          Albany, CA  94710

    Fax: (510) 559-5818                          Phone:  (510) 559-6194

Frank M. You

University of California-Davis

Albany, CA  94710

Phone:  (510) 559-6146

Last Modified: 10/1/2015
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