Collecting and curating data has never been more important – especially for systems biology. If already existing data isn’t available to other researchers, it may happen that the same experiment is conducted multiple times, which means a loss of time, resources and knowledge. In order to make data more accessible to everyone, the Scientific Databases and Visualization (SDBV) group at HITS developed the database SABIO-RK, a curated database containing structured information about biochemical reactions. The database was developed a few years ago at HITS and currently collects the data from scientific publications of the past 50 years.
The new project SABIO-VIS will add new visualization features to the database, making the data even more usable for the community. Interactive tools will enable the users to decide which data they want to see and in which way it will be visualized. The visualization will mainly facilitate the illustration and summary of the existing data. Apart from that, it will also ensure the quality and usability of the data sets.
The project has received a three-year funding by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (FKZ 031L0178). The HITS researchers Ulrike Wittig (biocurator) and Dorotea Dudas (software developer) will be working closely with the current users to tailor the new feature to the needs of the scientific community. The main target groups of SABIO-RK and SABIO-VIS are their already active community as well as other modelers and experimentalists in the life sciences.
The Heidelberg Institute for Theoretical Studies (HITS) was established in 2010 by the physicist and SAP co-founder Klaus Tschira (1940-2015) and the Klaus Tschira Foundation as a private, non-profit research institute. HITS conducts basic research in the natural sciences, mathematics and computer science, with a focus on the processing, structuring, and analyzing of large amounts of complex data and the development of computational methods and software. The research fields range from molecular biology to astrophysics. The shareholders of HITS are the HITS-Stiftung, which is a subsidiary of the Klaus Tschira Foundation, Heidelberg University and the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT). HITS also cooperates with other universities and research institutes and with industrial partners. The base funding of HITS is provided by the HITS Stiftung with funds received from the Klaus Tschira Foundation. The primary external funding agencies are the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), the German Research Foundation (DFG), and the European Union.