Genomes are tremendous co-evolutionary holistic systems for molecular storage, processing and fabrication of information. Their system-biological complexity remains, however, still largely mysterious, despite immense sequencing achievements and huge advances in the understanding of the general sequential, three-dimensional and regulatory organization. Here, we present the GLOBE 3D Genome Platform a completely novel grid based virtual “paper” tool and in fact the first system-biological genome browser integrating the holistic complexity of genomes in a single easy comprehensible platform: Based on a detailed study of biophysical and IT requirements, every architectural level from sequence to morphology of one or several genomes can be approached in a real and in a symbolic representation simultaneously and navigated by continuous scale-free zooming within a unique three-dimensional OpenGL and grid driven environment. In principle an unlimited number of multi-dimensional data sets can be visualized, customized in terms of arrangement, shape, colour, and texture etc. as well as accessed and annotated individually or in groups using internal or external data bases/facilities. Any information can be searched and correlated by importing or calculating simple relations in real-time using grid resources. A general correlation and application platform for more complex correlative analysis and a front-end for system-biological simulations both using again the huge capabilities of grid infrastructures is currently under development. Hence, the GLOBE 3D Genome Platform is an example of a grid based approach towards a virtual desktop for genomic work combining the three fundamental distributed resources: i) visual data representation, ii) data access and management, and iii) data analysis and creation. Thus, the GLOBE 3D Genome Platform is the novel system-biology oriented information system urgently needed to access, present, annotate, and to simulate the holistic genome complexity in a unique gateway towards a real understanding, educative presentation and curative manipulation planning of this tremendous evolutionary information grail – genomes.

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IOS Press
7th Annual HealthGrid Conference: Healthgrid Research, Innovation and Business Case, HealthGrid 2009
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Knoch, T., Lesnussa, M., Kepper, N., Eussen, B., & Grosveld, F. (2009). The GLOBE 3D Genome Platform - Towards a novel system-biological paper tool to integrate the huge complexity of genome organization and function. Presented at the 7th Annual HealthGrid Conference: Healthgrid Research, Innovation and Business Case, HealthGrid 2009. Retrieved from