I Want to Work in .... Bioinformatics, Cheminformatics and Health Informatics


Bioinformatics has grown from the application of information science, computer science, statistics and mathematics to biological issues. It involves getting all biological information (especially proteins, DNA and mRNA) logged, coded and /or retrieved in an easily accessible format. There are central banks (like Genbank) but most bioinformatics jobs are with individual research groups in academia or industry. Popular sequence databases, such as GenBank and EMBL, have been growing at exponential rates. This deluge of information has necessitated the careful storage, organisation and indexing of sequence information.

The simplest tasks used in bioinformatics concern the creation and maintenance of databases of biological information. Nucleic acid sequences (and the protein sequences derived from them) comprise the majority of such databases. While the storage and organisation of millions of nucleotides is far from trivial, designing a database and developing an interface whereby researchers can both access existing information and submit new entries is only the beginning. The most pressing tasks in bioinformatics involve the analysis of sequence information. This involves:


There is a strong demand for people with Bioinformatics skills, either in a field relating to Biology or to IT.  The main destinations of graduates doing Masters Degrees in Bioinformatics are research degrees, and employment related to IT and Bioinformatics in research centres, pharmaceuticals companies, banking and industry.


Cheminformatics involves the application of computing to chemistry: the process of storing and retrieving information about chemical issues and is highly related to bioinformatics.


Big research institutes in the UK include the Sanger Centre, the European Bioinformatics Institute and the MRC's UK Human Genome Mapping Project Resource Centre, all in Cambridge, as well as the Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics in Oxford. The big pharmaceutical companies such as GlaxoSmithKline or AstraZeneca recruit regularly, but smaller companies are using bioinformatics too including those involved in agricultural applications, industrial organisms and personal care products.

Postgraduate Courses:

Useful web sites


Translation of this page into Swedish


Last fully updated 2014