Background: The unicellular green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii is an important eukaryotic model organism for the study of photosynthesis and plant growth. In the era of modern high-throughput technologies there is an imperative need to integrate large-scale data sets from high-throughput experimental techniques using computational methods and database resources to provide comprehensive information about the molecular and cellular organization of a single organism.
Results: In the framework of the German Systems Biology initiative GoFORSYS, a pathway database and web-portal for Chlamydomonas (ChlamyCyc) was established, which currently features about 250 metabolic pathways with associated genes, enzymes, and compound information. ChlamyCyc was assembled using an integrative approach combining the recently published genome sequence, bioinformatics methods, and experimental data from metabolomics and proteomics experiments. We analyzed and integrated a combination of primary and secondary database resources, such as existing genome annotations from JGI, EST collections, orthology information, and MapMan classification.
Conclusion: ChlamyCyc provides a curated and integrated systems biology repository that will enable and assist in systematic studies of fundamental cellular processes in Chlamydomonas. The ChlamyCyc database and web-portal is freely available under http://chlamycyc.mpimp-golm.mpg.de.