Multidisciplinarity and integration are characteristic features of postgenomic research. Genes, gene products, their regulatory networks and interactions with environment must be analysed as components of higher order structures, metabolic pathways or entire cells and organisms. This type of an integrative and holistic approach has been termed systems biology. Research defined as systems biology is characteristically multidisciplinary and dependent on bioinformatics, the computer-assisted analysis of biological data. Close collaboration of biologists, biochemists, physiologists, chemists and physicists with computational biologists and mathematicians is needed for the characterisation and modelling of the complex interactions of genes, proteins and metabolic processes. Storage and use of human genetic information and manipulation of genomes may pose ethical questions and challenges, necessitating research on the ethical, social and cultural dimensions of bioinformatics and systems biology.
Objectives The main objective of the SYSBIO Research Programme was to promote an integrative and holistic approach in research on biological processes at the systems level. Multidisciplinarity, interdisciplinarity and transdisciplinarity were essential characteristics of the Programme. Bioinformatics to played a central integrating role in the projects. The programme developed research and research environments, national and international networking and researcher training.
Funding National Technology Agency Tekes and The Board of the Academy of Finland jointly allocated EUR 10,7 million to the Programme.
Programme memorandum Programme memorandum.pdf
Coordination This research project was coordinated by programme manager Merja Kärkkäinen