Bioinformatics & Biodiscovery (B&B)

bioinfo illustration

The overall aim of the B&B group is to strengthen bioinformatics and biodiscovery research at INN, which in turn should help to attract external funding and publishing in high impact international journals.

To achieve this aim, we have the following sub-goals:

  • Provide bioinformatics support to all on-going projects and future grant applications
  • Realize projects, both research driven and innovation based to enable value creation from biomaterials
  • Maintain and develop key scientific instrumentation platforms both analytical and processing type, to allow versatile research into biodiscovery and bioinformatics
  • Foster collaboration and interaction with other researchers and with industry partners to strengthen joint grant proposals

Bioinformatics

Most biological research involves application of some type of mathematical, statistical or computational tools to help analyze biological data and integrate various types of information in the process of answering a particular biological question. Whether the application is simple or complex, it is clear that mathematical and computational tools have become an integral part of modern-day biological research. The merger of these disciplines created an information-oriented field in biology, which is now known as bioinformatics.

Bioinformatics involves the use of computers for storage, retrieval, analysis, and visualization of information related to biological macromolecules such as DNA, RNA and proteins.

Biodiscovery

Bioeconomy is the production and conversion of renewable biological resources and rest raw materials, to value added products. Products can be food, feed, fiber, bioactive substances and bioenergy. Biodiscovery is a stepping-stone towards fulfilling the goals of bioeconomy in the 21st century. An important principle in the bioeconomy is to utilize the total value in biomass and rest raw materials. Bioprocess technology (BPT) are the methods and tools we use to take out and isolate these products – both in the lab and at larger scale. Using physical, chemical, and enzymatic methods in BPT it is possible to separate out even very small molecules and have them prepared in a purified and active form.

Our research supports the new bioeconomy as we develop solutions for utilizing all values in the biomass. With less going to waste, we add value to rest raw materials and bring crucial nutrients back into the loop. 

Project examples

Computer hardware

  • Server 1: 72 cores, 1 TB RAM, 30 TB storage
  • Server 2: 56 cores, 512 GB RAM, 24 TB storage
  • 2 DELL Precision Tower Linux Workstations
  • Access to Norwegian Bioinformatics infrastructure including StoreBioinfo, NelS, Stallo supercomputer

Commercial Software

  • Schrodinger Small Molecule Drug Discovery suite
  • Schrodinger Biologics suite
  • CLC genomics workbench
  • Omicx Box

In addition, we use a large number of open-source software and web services in bioinformatics

Research Platforms / Methods

  • Fermentation – lab (3 L) and pilot (75 L) reactors (Bioengineering), shaking incubators 6 x 2 L (NB)
  • Protein purification – Automated biochromatography on GE ÄKTA Pure / Start. Expanded bed (EBA) and Radial Flow (RFC) pilot scale-columns. Crossflow ultra- /microfiltration (Millipore/Pall)
  • Natural products isolation – solid/liquid extraction
  • Various analytical instrument platforms

Collaborators

National

  • OUS - Prof. Kjetil Tasken, Director Inst. Cancer Research, Radiumhospitalet
  • OUS – Dr. Arne Michael Taxt (Ullevål)
  • UiO – Profs. Fernanda Petersen & Sundeep Sahay, Dr. Jan Haug Anonsen
  • UiT – Profs. Ruth Paulsen, Arnfinn Sundsfjord
  • Folkehelse Institutt – Dr. Umaer Naseer
  • UNN – Prof. Ørjan Samuelsen; UiB - Profs. Vidar Bakken & Audun Nerland
  • NOFIMA, Ås - Drs. Astrid Nilsson & Stefan Sahlström
  • NMBU, Ås - Prof. Gerd Vegarud and Dr. Kamalpreet Kaur
  • Graminor – Dr. Muath Alsheikh
  • Geno – Dr. Trygve Roger Solberg

International

  • KTH, Stockholm – Prof. Ahmed Hemani
  • Uppsala University – Dr. Manfred Grabherr
  • Univ. of York, UK - Drs. Raymond Sloan and Mark Gronnow
  • Indian Council of Medical Research – Dr. Harpreet Singh
  • All India Institute of Medical Sciences – Profs. Punit Kaur and Arti Kapil
  • Tallinn University, Estonia/Indian Institute of Technology – Prof. Kolin Paul
  • South Bohemian Univ., Czech Republic Profs. Jan Bartov & Veronica Bartova
  • University of Århus, Denmark - Prof. Lotte Bach-Larsen

Relevant courses

BSc:   

  • 2BT201 Bioprocess Technology (15 ECTS, autumn)
  • 2BT211 Industrial biotechnology (5 ECTS, spring)  

MSc:  

  • 2BIO012 Bioinformatics and Biostatistics (15 ECTS, spring)
  • 2BIO035 Bioprocess Technology (5 ECTS, spring)

PhD:   

  • Bioinformatics and biostatistics (5 ECTS)
  • Structure and function of biological macromolecules (10 ECTS)
  • Seminars in bioprocess technology (5 ECTS)