Bioinformatics mentorship in a resource limited setting
Whalen, Christopher C.
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The two recent simultaneous developments of high-throughput sequencing and increased computational power have brought bioinformatics to the forefront as an important tool for effective and efficient biomedical research. Consequently, there have been multiple approaches to developing bioinformatics skills. In resource rich environments, it has been possible to develop and implement formal fully accredited graduate degree training programs in bioinformatics. In resource limited settings with a paucity of expert bioinformaticians, infrastructure and financial resources, the task has been approached by delivering short courses on bioinformatics—lasting only a few days to a couple of weeks. Alternatively, courses are offered online, usually over a period of a few months. These approaches are limited by both the lack of sustained in-person trainer–trainee interactions, which is a key part of quality mentorships and short durations which constrain the amount of learning that can be achieved.