Corporate Banner
Satellite Banner
Scientific Communities
Become a Member | Sign in
Home>News>This Article

IBM Discovery Could Shed Light on Workings of the Human Genome

Published: Wednesday, April 26, 2006
Last Updated: Wednesday, April 26, 2006
Bookmark and Share
IBM researchers discover numerous DNA patterns shared by areas of the human genome.

IBM has announced that its researchers have discovered numerous DNA patterns shared by areas of the human genome that were thought to have little or no influence on its function and those areas that do.

As reported in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), regions of the human genome that were assumed to largely contain evolutionary leftovers (called "junk DNA") may actually hold significant clues that can add to scientists' understanding of cellular processes.

IBM researchers have discovered that these regions contain numerous, short DNA "motifs," or repeating sequence fragments, which also are present in the parts of the genome that give rise to proteins.

If verified experimentally, the discovery suggests a potential connection between these coding and non-coding parts of the human genome that could have a profound impact on genomic research and provide important insights on the workings of cells.

"Our goal is to apply advanced computational techniques to analyze the workings of processes and systems, in this case the function of the human genome," said Ajay Royyuru, head of the Computational Biology Center at IBM Research.

"Using these tools, we've been able to shed new light on parts of the DNA that were traditionally thought of as not having a specific purpose."

"We believe the innovative application of technology can provide further understanding in the life sciences at large."

The IBM team used a mathematical tool called pattern-discovery, often applied to mine useful information from very large repositories of data in both business and scientific applications, to sift through the approximately six billion letters in the non-coding regions of the human genome and look for repeating sequence fragments, or motifs.

Among the millions of discovered motifs, the team identified approximately 128,000 that also occur in the coding region of the genome and are significantly over-represented in genes involved in specific biological processes such as cell communication, regulation of transcription, transport and others.

In fact, copies of one or more of these motifs can be found in over 90 percent of all known human gene sequences, as well as some genes of other animals where they associate with similar biological processes.

The report on this work, "Short blocks from the non-coding parts of the human genome have instances within nearly all known genes and relate to biological processes," by Isidore Rigoutsos, Tien Huynh, Kevin Miranda, Aristotelis Tsirigos, Alice McHardy and Daniel Platt of IBM's T.J. Watson Research Center, Yorktown Heights, NY appeared on April 24th in the early edition of the journal PNAS.

Further Information
Access to this exclusive content is for Technology Networks Premium members only.

Join Technology Networks Premium for free access to:

  • Exclusive articles
  • Presentations from international conferences
  • Over 2,600+ scientific posters on ePosters
  • More Than 3,800+ scientific videos on LabTube
  • 35 community eNewsletters

Sign In

Forgotten your details? Click Here
If you are not a member you can join here

*Please note: By logging into you agree to accept the use of cookies. To find out more about the cookies we use and how to delete them, see our privacy policy.

Related Content

Watson to Gain Ability to “See” with Planned $1B Acquisition of Merge Healthcare
Deal brings Watson technology together with leader in medical images.
Friday, August 07, 2015
IBM and Mars Launch Pioneering Effort to Drive Advances in Global Food Safety
New Sequencing the Food Supply Chain Consortium to undertake the largest-ever metagenomics study and unlock food safety insights across the supply chain.
Friday, February 06, 2015
IBM’s Big Data & Analytics Monitors Babies at INFANT Centre
INFANT Centre at University College Cork to use IBM Big Data & Analytics for real time monitoring of babies in neonatal intensive care.
Tuesday, January 27, 2015
The New York Genome Center and IBM Watson Group Collaborate
Project aims to apply advanced analytics to genomic treatment options for brain cancer patients.
Wednesday, September 10, 2014
Texas A&M System Teams with IBM to Drive Computational Sciences Research through Big Data and Analytics
The collaboration will leverage the power of big data analytics and high performance computing (HPC) systems.
Monday, February 03, 2014
IBM Commits $1.2 Billion to Expand Global Cloud Footprint, Builds Massive Network
IBM is committing to significantly expand its global network of cloud data centers.
Monday, January 27, 2014
IBM and Swiss Hospital Test New Tool for Diagnosing Cancer
The compact and easy-to-use device may help unravel tumor heterogeneity and assist in personalized treatment strategies.
Thursday, October 24, 2013
IBM’s Biomedical Analytics Platform Helps Doctors Personalise Treatment
Italy’s Istituto Nazionale dei Tumori testing new decision support solutions for cancer treatments.
Tuesday, March 20, 2012
New Silicon Probe Assists in Disease Diagnostics and Drug Discovery
Scientists have developed a flexible, non-contact microfluidic probe made from silicon that can aid researchers and pathologists to investigate critical tissue samples accurately, reducing the need for large biopsy samples.
Monday, January 16, 2012
IBM Research Aims to Build Nanoscale DNA Sequencer to Help Drive Down Cost of Personalized Genetic Analysis
New advanced research effort to demonstrate a silicon-based “DNA Transistor” could help pave the way to read human DNA easily.
Thursday, October 08, 2009
IBM and University Researchers to Develop Research Tools to Improve Cancer Patient Outcomes
Advanced imaging and computer technologies aimed at providing for reliable prognosis leading to more personalized treatment.
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
IBM Joins Forces with top Cancer Centers
IBM Collaborates with MSKCC, the Molecular Profiling Institute and Sainte-Justine Research Center.
Friday, November 11, 2005
IBM create smallest solid-state light emitter with Nanotubes

Thursday, May 08, 2003
IBM and IDBS Form Global Strategic Alliance

Wednesday, April 02, 2003
Scientific News
Lung Repair and Regeneration Gene Discovered
New role for hedgehog gene offers better understanding of lung disease.
How Cell Growth Triggers Cell Division
Researchers in Jan Skotheim's lab have discovered a previously unknown mechanism that controls how large cells grow, an insight that could one day provide insight into attacking diseases such as cancer.
Microbe Sleuth
Tanja Bosak examines how life and the Earth evolved in tandem during their early history together.
3 Ways Viruses Have Changed Science for the Better
Viruses are really good at what they do, and we’ve been able to harness their skills to learn about – and potentially improve – human health in several ways.
Restoring Vision with Stem Cells
Age-related macular degeneration (AMRD) could be treated by transplanting photoreceptors produced by the directed differentiation of stem cells, thanks to findings published today by Professor Gilbert Bernier of the University of Montreal and its affiliated Maisonneuve-Rosemont Hospital.
The Age of Humans Controlling Microbes
Engineered bacteria could soon be used to detect environmental toxins, treat diseases, and sustainably produce chemicals and fuels.
Mixed Up Cell Transportation Key Piece of ALS and Dementia Puzzle
Researchers from the University of Toronto are one step closer to solving this incredibly complex puzzle, offering hope for treatment.
Metabolomic Platform Reveals Fundamental Flaw in Common Lab Technology
A new study led by scientists at The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) shows that a technology used in thousands of laboratories, called gas chromatography mass spectrometry (GC-MS), fundamentally alters the samples it analyzes.
Atriva Therapeutics GmbH Develops Innovative Flu Drug
Highly effective against seasonal and pandemic influenza.
New Gene Therapy for Vision Loss From a Mitochondrial Disease
NIH-funded study shows success in targeting mitochondrial DNA in mice.
Scroll Up
Scroll Down
Skyscraper Banner

Skyscraper Banner
Go to LabTube
Go to eposters
Access to the latest scientific news
Exclusive articles
Upload and share your posters on ePosters
Latest presentations and webinars
View a library of 1,800+ scientific and medical posters
2,600+ scientific and medical posters
A library of 2,500+ scientific videos on LabTube
3,800+ scientific videos