Bioinformatics at SFU

What is Bioinformatics?

The definition of bioinformatics is currently controversial, but bioinformatics can be loosely defined as the use of computers and computer science to study biological questions. It forms the intersection between molecular biology (and related biological disciplines) and computing science. This interdisciplinary field involves researchers who work at many different points on the computer science-biology spectrum: From those who are developing new relevant algorithms, to those who are developing and using computational applications to study biological phenomena, gain new insight into the life sciences, identify new drug targets etc. This field is currently evolving, but one point is agreed upon: Bioinformatics is a blossoming field within which there remain many significant discoveries to be made.


SFU researchers have access to high performance computing resources such as WestGrid, and advanced visualization technologies at IRMACS (the Centre for Interdisciplinary Research in the Mathematical and Computer Sciences). For more information about the resources of individual labs, look at the webpages of relevant faculty.

Simon Fraser University is located atop Burnaby Mountain in Greater Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, approximately 5 km from the edge of the city of Vancouver (and a three hour drive north of Seattle, Washington, in the U.S.). For an overview of SFU, including its innovative cross-disciplinary and flexible program philosophy, see the information for New Applicants (focused primarily on undergraduates, but relevant to anyone wishing to learn more about SFU).