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Bionumbers: ”

Ecoleetage: CSD G11


[[Image:Logo Bionumbers.jpg]]

==What is BioNumbers?==

Bionumbers is a collaborative community effort to establish a database of useful biological numbers.
For example:
• How many ribosomes or mRNAs are in a cell (e.coli, yeast, mammalian or any other) ?
• The volume of different cells and organelles
• Concentrations and absolute numbers of ions and metabolites
• Generation times of different organisms
and many many other useful but too often hard to find numbers. Each property/number includes a reference, and other relevant information.
Some more explanation on what it is and where is it going to can be found below.
To join as a collaborator and contribute your favorite numbers please visit BioNumbers.


The BioNumbers database started as a joint effort by Ron Milo, Paul Jorgensen and Mike Springer at the systems biology department in Harvard and Griffin Weber of information technology at Harvard medical school. The effort was inspired by a comparison of values of key properties in bacteria, yeast and a mammalian cell in Uri Alon’s book – ‘Introduction to systems biology’. It is our hope that the database will facilitate quantitative analysis and reasoning in a field of research where numbers tend to be ‘soft’ and difficult to vouch for.


Numbers are absolute and immutable entities. Biology is built on adaptation and flexibility. It is thus no surprise that concrete values for many biological properties are hard to find. Most quantitative properties in biology depend on the context or the method of measurement, the organism and the cell type. Yet it is clear that characteristic numbers and ranges are very useful tools to have available. The aim of this database is to be a repository for useful biological numbers, that gives a concrete value while supplying the relevant reference and comments that depict its domain of validity. We hope that you and others will find it useful and help to expand it and make it more accurate.

==Interesting examples from BioNumbers==

• Number of mRNAs in cell (total absolute number):
o Yeast – 15000 (BNID 100273)
o Escherichia coli – 1380 (BNID 100064)
• Number ATP to make 1 cell
o Escherichia coli – 55 billion (BNID 100178)
• Minimal generation time:
o Vibrio natriegens – 9.8 minutes (BNID 100297)
• Mutation rate per genome per replication:
o Escherichia coli – 0.0025 (BNID 100266)

==Contribute a BioNumber==

It is really easy. You can send log in and create an account at bioNumbers website, or if you are too busy just choose Quick Submit and we will enter the number for you based on a reference you provide.

==A number you would like to see on BioNumbers?==

Do you have a secret ‘wish list’ of biological numbers you would like to know? Please tell them to us and we would try to find them and incorporate them as soon as possible. Send us an email at or use the Quick Submit form.

External links

==Media coverage of bioNumbers==

• radio lab – from WNYC
• OpenHelix
• Tim O’Reilly
• spurgeonblog
• Digg
• mybiotechlife

(Via Wikipedia – New pages [en].)

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