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1.  Construction and analysis of protein–protein interaction networks 
Protein–protein interactions form the basis for a vast majority of cellular events, including signal transduction and transcriptional regulation. It is now understood that the study of interactions between cellular macromolecules is fundamental to the understanding of biological systems. Interactions between proteins have been studied through a number of high-throughput experiments and have also been predicted through an array of computational methods that leverage the vast amount of sequence data generated in the last decade. In this review, I discuss some of the important computational methods for the prediction of functional linkages between proteins. I then give a brief overview of some of the databases and tools that are useful for a study of protein–protein interactions. I also present an introduction to network theory, followed by a discussion of the parameters commonly used in analysing networks, important network topologies, as well as methods to identify important network components, based on perturbations.
doi:10.1186/1759-4499-2-2
PMCID: PMC2834675  PMID: 20334628
2.  Towards Robot Scientists for autonomous scientific discovery 
We review the main components of autonomous scientific discovery, and how they lead to the concept of a Robot Scientist. This is a system which uses techniques from artificial intelligence to automate all aspects of the scientific discovery process: it generates hypotheses from a computer model of the domain, designs experiments to test these hypotheses, runs the physical experiments using robotic systems, analyses and interprets the resulting data, and repeats the cycle. We describe our two prototype Robot Scientists: Adam and Eve. Adam has recently proven the potential of such systems by identifying twelve genes responsible for catalysing specific reactions in the metabolic pathways of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. This work has been formally recorded in great detail using logic. We argue that the reporting of science needs to become fully formalised and that Robot Scientists can help achieve this. This will make scientific information more reproducible and reusable, and promote the integration of computers in scientific reasoning. We believe the greater automation of both the physical and intellectual aspects of scientific investigations to be essential to the future of science. Greater automation improves the accuracy and reliability of experiments, increases the pace of discovery and, in common with conventional laboratory automation, removes tedious and repetitive tasks from the human scientist.
doi:10.1186/1759-4499-2-1
PMCID: PMC2813846  PMID: 20119518
3.  The philosophy of scientific experimentation: a review 
Practicing and studying automated experimentation may benefit from philosophical reflection on experimental science in general. This paper reviews the relevant literature and discusses central issues in the philosophy of scientific experimentation. The first two sections present brief accounts of the rise of experimental science and of its philosophical study. The next sections discuss three central issues of scientific experimentation: the scientific and philosophical significance of intervention and production, the relationship between experimental science and technology, and the interactions between experimental and theoretical work. The concluding section identifies three issues for further research: the role of computing and, more specifically, automating, in experimental research, the nature of experimentation in the social and human sciences, and the significance of normative, including ethical, problems in experimental science.
doi:10.1186/1759-4499-1-2
PMCID: PMC2809324  PMID: 20098589

Results 1-3 (3)