Web Portal on Computational Biology

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This website is called the Web Portal on Computational Biology. Within this context, the term Computational Biology is understood as a generic term for anything related to biology that is done using a computer.
In a narrower sense, Computational Biology is often used synonymously with Bioinformatics, which is the science of processing information regarding nucleic acids, amino acids and proteins using computers. However, this web portal in particular is less about Bioinformatics than about Computational Systems Biology and Artificial Life.

Computational Systems Biology is the study of biological systems such as organelles (e.g.: mitochondria), cells (e.g.: bacteria, yeast), organs (e.g.: heart) or organ systems (e.g.: immune system) using computers. There are two aims of Computational Systems Biology: First, it is about obtaining quantative results, for which computation is required. Second, it is about modelling biological systems on the computer and thus simulating their behaviour. This allows the observer to experiment with biological systems in silico without actually doing harm on any living organism.
When the system studied is a cell, Computational Systems Biology is sometimes also called Computational Cell Biology.
There are basically two approaches two Computational Systems Biology, the bottom-up and the top-down approach. While the bottom-up approach focuses on reactions between molecules, the top-down approach starts with an organism or an organ system, tries to model the behaviour of whole organs and connects several models with each other. The top-down approach is sometimes also called Computational Physiology.
If the focus is on the nervous system, the term Computational Neuroscience is also in use.

Finally, Artificial Life is about simulating whole (multi-cellular) organisms or even an entire ecosystem on the computer. While Computational Systems Biology is strictly orientated towards real-life biology, Artificial Life may be based on different concepts. In the Artificial Life paradigm, organisms simulated on a computer need not have a genome based on the genetic code that appears in nature and they may be very different from any organism that exists in the real world.

For more information, Wikipedia might also serve as a good source for beginners:

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