Bioinformatic tools for inferring functional information from plant microarray data: Tools for the first steps
Microarrays are a very powerful tool for quantifying the amount of RNA in samples; however, their ability to query essentially every gene in a genome, which can number in the tens of thousands, presents analytical and interpretative problems. As a result, a variety of software and web-based tools have been developed to help with these issues. This article highlights and reviews some of the tools for the first steps in the analysis of a microarray study. We have tried for a balance between free and commercial systems. We have organized the tools by topics including image processing tools (Section 2), power analysis tools (Section 3), image analysis tools (Section 4), database tools (Section 5), databases of functional information (Section 6), annotation tools (Section 7), statistical and data mining tools (Section 8), and dissemination tools (Section 9).