Ten simple rules for developing bioinformatics capacity at an academic institution
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Bioinformatics is an applied interdisciplinary field whose primary purpose is to develop and deploy computational techniques to store, organize, and aid in the analysis and interpretation of large-scale data obtained from biological systems. While rooted in the analysis of nucleotide and protein sequences, it now encompasses techniques targeting multiple data acquisition modalities and seeks to comprehend the functioning of biological systems at many different levels. Bioinformaticians need to be cognizant of diverse scientific fields: basic and molecular biology, genetics, mathematics, statistics, and computer science at a minimum, thus requiring a thoroughly interdisciplinary set of skills to successfully carry out their duties. Due to the growing importance of bioinformatics in enabling modern biomedical research, programs and core facilities have been established in most academic institutions in the developed world over the last 30 years.