Basser Seminar Series

Visualizing Biological Data

Speaker: Dr Seán O'Donoghue, CSIRO & Garvan Institute for Medical Research

Time: Wednesday 13 February 2013, 2:00pm to 3:00pm

Location: The University of Sydney, School of IT Building, Lecture Theatre (Room 123), Level 1

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Experimental methods in biological research are delivering data of rapidly increasing volume and complexity. However, many current methods and tools used to visualize and analyse these data are inadequate, and urgent improvements are needed if life scientists are to gain insight from this data deluge, rather than being overwhelmed. I will discuss a recent switch in focus away from algorithmic bioinformatics towards integrated visualization and analysis of biodata, illustrating how such a focus can have significant impact, with examples drawn from my work in structural bioinformatics ( and text mining systems for life science literature ( I will also discuss a recent, international community initiative aimed at bringing data visualization experts together with computational biologists, bioinformatics, graphic designers, animators, and medical illustrators, with the goal of raising the global standard of bioinformatics software (

Speaker's biography

"Dr Seán O'Donoghue is a research scientist working on computational systems that help interpret life science and biomedical data. He recently returned to Australia after nearly 20 years in Germany, where he worked at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory - one of the world's foremost institutes for life science research - and at Lion Bioscience, a bioinformatics start-up company. He is now an OCE Science Leader at CSIRO, and jointly a senior faculty member at the Garvan Institute for Medical Research in Sydney."