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Information technology is the science of using information to understand biology. The information technology research carried out through the efforts of CERM and collaborators is realized on various levels, with a wide range of applications.

In particular, the following lines of research are pursued:

  • Analysis of weak interactions among proteins
  • Comparative analyses of genomic sequences and genetic data banks
  • Evolutionary analyses of metalloprotein families
  • Simulations of molecular dynamics of metalloproteins
  • In silico docking of candidate pharmaceuticals against selected pharmacological targets

These aspects of research are complementary among themselves and within the research methods used.  A synergy is thus created among theory and experimentation that amplifies the capacity and impact of the scientific work of others, stimulating the development of innovative applications.  The ultimate goal is the acquisition at of a vision at the cellular level of the role of metals in Life and the corresponding pathological aspects.

In this context CERM has developed a software package, Retrieval of Domains and Genome Browsing (RDGB), which can be used to assess whether one organism is able to perform a biochemical process of interest by checking whether its genome encodes all the components that are known to be necessary for the task. The package can be downloaded here.

CERM provides integrated databases, software and web-based tools for genome browsing, macromolecular structure calculation based on NMR data with/without the inclusion of paramagnetic constraints, analysis of metal-binding sites and metalloproteins. Access to programs is provided via the web, exploiting grid and cloud computing platforms. CERM is a key partner of the West-Life Virtual Research Environment. West-Life is an expansion over WeNMR, aiming to provide data processing and analysis services for all techniques of structural biology.