Encyclopedia of Database Systems

2018 Edition
| Editors: Ling Liu, M. Tamer Özsu

Graph Management in the Life Sciences

  • Ulf LeserEmail author
  • Silke Trißl
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-8265-9_1436


Graphs play an increasingly important role in many research areas in the life sciences. Especially in systems biology, graphs are used to model the complex temporal and spatial relationships between entities within an organism. For example, graphs are used to model signaling pathways, where nodes are proteins and edges represent the flow of information between proteins. The flow represents physical modifications of the participating proteins, such as the addition or removal of certain chemical groups. Since proteins are often involved in various signaling pathways, one can model the complete signaling management inside a cell as a graph consisting of tens of thousands of nodes and many more edges. However, graphs are also used in less obvious areas. Biological ontologiesare cycle-free graphs of biological concepts connected by specialization relationships; they are called thesauri in information retrieval. Phylogenetic networks are formed by species and their evolutionary...

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Humboldt University of BerlinBerlinGermany

Section editors and affiliations

  • Louiqa Raschid
    • 1
  1. 1.Robert H. Smith School of BusinessUniversity of MarylandCollege ParkUSA