We have applied the Neuro Behavior Ontology (NBO), an ontology for the annotation of behavioral gene functions and behavioral phenotypes, to the annotation of more than 1,000 genes in the mouse that are known to play a role in behavior. These annotations can be explored by researchers interested in genes involved in particular behaviors and used computationally to provide insights into the behavioral phenotypes resulting from differences in gene expression. We developed the OntoFUNC tool and have applied it to enrichment analyses over the NBO to provide high-level behavioral interpretations of gene expression datasets. The resulting increase in the number of gene annotations facilitates the identification of behavioral or neurologic processes by assisting the formulation of hypotheses about the relationships between gene, processes, and phenotypic manifestations resulting from behavioral observations.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
RH was supported by the European Commission’s 7th Framework Programme, RICORDO Project (Grant No. 248502). RH, PNS, and GVG were supported by the National Institutes of Health (Grant No. R01 HG004838-02).
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