September 1, 2007 (Vol. 27, No. 15)
Strong Points: Great EST tool
Weak Points: Is a bit dated
Before there were genomic sequences, there were ESTs, which served as mileposts on the nucleic acid superhighway and, by golly, they were good. ESTs of course are sequence segments of random cDNAs and as such are exons of genes. ESTs proved to be excellent tools for both helping to clone and sequence full length cDNAs as well as for identifying gene transcripts and discovering genes. At spliceNest, one will find databases devoted to providing researchers access to EST information. Options include searching by chromosome number, cluster search, keyword, or sequence (BLAST) or one can simply browse by clicking on a chromosome icon and selecting from a list of ESTs. The retrieved information includes graphics with genomic sequence alignments, exon/intron structure, and possible alternative splice sites.