From Questions to Effective Answers: On the Utility of Knowledge-Driven Querying Systems for Life Sciences Data

TitleFrom Questions to Effective Answers: On the Utility of Knowledge-Driven Querying Systems for Life Sciences Data
Publication TypeConference Proceedings
Year of Publication2013
AuthorsAmir Asiaee, Prashant Doshi, Todd Minning, Satya Sahoo, Priti Parikh, Amit Sheth, Rick Tarleton
Conference Name9th International Conference on Data Integration in the Life Sciences (DILS '13)
Conference LocationMontreal, Canada
Keywordsforms based querying, knowledge-driven querying, Paige tools, Parasite Knowledge Repository, T. cruzi, template based querying
Abstract

We compare two distinct approaches for querying data in the context of the life sciences. The first approach utilizes conventional databases to store the data and provides intuitive form-based interfaces to facilitate querying of the data, commonly used by the life science researchers that we study. The second approach utilizes a large OWL ontology and the same datasets associated as RDF instances of the ontology. Both approaches are being used in parallel by a team of cell biologists in their daily research activities, with the objective of gradually replacing the conventional approach with the knowledge-driven one. We describe several benefits of the knowledge-driven approach in comparison to the traditional one, and highlight a few limitations. We believe that our analysis not only explicitly highlights the benefits and limitations of semantic Web technologies in the context of life sciences but also contributes toward effective ways of translating a question in a researcher'’s mind into precise queries with the intent of obtaining effective answers.

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