Glycomics Data Processing
Over the last two decades, a large amount of GlycoInformatics tools such as databases, web applications, web services and workflows, have been developed. Although the majority of these tools are readily accessible for users, many research groups are not aware of these tools. Reason for this is the under-representation of GlycoInformatics talks and posters in traditional glycomics conferences and the fact that these tools are either unpublished or published in BioInformatics or Informatics journals (e.g. Bioinformatics or BMC Bioinformatics) that are not widely read by glycomics researchers. Several database and GlycoInformatics project web sites provide hyperlinks to available tools. However, most of the tools that are accessible by these hyperlinks are not fully described, making tool discovery a difficult task. Furthermore, these web pages are infrequently updated, resulting in outdated information and even dead links when tools disappear or move to another URL. Another disadvantage is that web services and workflows, which are becoming increasingly important, are rarely reported in these web pages. Thus, a central entry point that addresses all of these shortcomings will be extremely beneficial to scientists attempting to discover GlycoInformatics tools that meet their needs.
We have developed a web based portal for the registration and discovery of GlycoInformatics tools, called GlycomicsPortal. This portal allows research groups that have developed software tools, such as databases, web services, workflows, stand-alone applications or web based applications, to register their software in the portal and to maintain a web page that is clearly annotated with information required to effectively use these tools. In addition to descriptions of the software, information about software licensing, related publications, and updated URL’s to access the software, our portal includes associated files such as screenshots or manuals. Research groups that are looking for software relevant to their research can use the portal as a search engine to identify and obtain GlycoInformatics tools based on specific software functionality or type of information that they would like to process.
GlycomicsPortal is a freely available platform that allows rapid discovery of glycomics related software without screening the internet or Pubmed. The fact that the research group that developed each software tool maintains an information page to that tool will ensure timely updating of information in the portal.
Click here to watch a Demonstration of Glycomics Data Processing