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The field of bioinformatics that integrates knowledge about the evolutionary history of organisms (i.e. phylogeny) with structural and functional analysis of their genomes (i.e. genomics) and proteins (proteomics). A basic supposition is that well-characterized genes (or proteins) in one organism provide valuable insights into the likely sequence and function of homologous genes or proteins in related organisms. Conversely, comparisons of gene or protein sequences from different species can provide evidence of possible homology, and hence shared evolutionary origins. On a molecular level, the vast amounts of data from genomics projects are used to construct phylogenetic databases for genes and proteins; sequence data are correlated with experimental findings about protein structure and function and subject to statistical analysis. The overarching goal is to provide an objective measure of the reliability of assumptions made about similar genes or proteins in different species.

Subjects: Biological Sciences.

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