Journal article Open Access


Abdulganiyu Abdu Yusuf; Zahraddeen Sufyanu; Kabir Yusuf Mamman; Abubakar Umar Suleiman

Bioinformatics is the application of computational tools to capture and interpret biological data. It has wide applications in drug development, crop improvement, agricultural biotechnology and forensic DNA analysis. There are various databases available to researchers in bioinformatics. These databases are customized for a specific need and are ranged in size, scope, and purpose. The main drawbacks of bioinformatics databases include redundant information, constant change, data spread over multiple databases, incomplete information, several errors, and sometimes incorrect links. Also, standard database, naming conventions, and nomenclature are not clearly defined for many aspects of biological information. Hence, these make information extraction more difficult. In this paper, most widely used bioinformatics databases are presented. These databases are notable for their level of redundancy and annotation, structure coverage and accessibility. They are GenBank, Protein Information Resource (PIR), DNA Data Bank of Japan (DDBJ), European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), Protein Data Bank (PDB), Universal Protein Resource (UniProt), Swiss-Prot, Structural Classification of Protein (SCOP) and Class Architecture Topology Homology (CATH) databases. The key features of the databases are demonstrated and detailed comparisons of the databases were made based on primary and secondary form of databases, and their uniqueness were also highlighted. The databases are foundation stones of bioinformatics and are useful for performing a rigorous benchmarking.

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