A significant proportion of developmental biology data is presented in the form of images at morphologically diverse stages of development. The curation of these datasets presents different challenges to that of sequence/text-based data. Towards this end, the eMouseAtlas project created a digital atlas of mouse embryo development as a means of understanding developmental anatomy and exploring the relationship between genes and development in a spatial context. Using the morphological staging system pioneered by Karl Theiler, the project has generated 3D models of post-implantation mouse development and used them as a spatial framework for the delineation of anatomical components and for archiving in situ gene expression data in the EMAGE database. This has allowed us to develop a unique online resource for mouse developmental biology. We describe here the underlying structure of the resource, as well as some of the tools that have been developed to allow users to mine the curated image data. These tools include our IIP3D/X3DOM viewer that allows 3D visualisation of anatomy and/or gene expression in the context of a web browser, and the eHistology resource that extends this functionality to allow visualisation of high-resolution cellular level images of histology sections. Furthermore, we review some of the informatics aspects of eMouseAtlas to provide a deeper insight into the use of the atlas and gene expression database.
Mammalian Genome – Springer Journals
Published: Aug 22, 2015
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