Toward an Algorithm for Distance-Based Phylogeny Construction

<p>Welcome to our class!</p><p>In this class, we will consider the following two central biological&nbsp;questions (the computational approaches needed to solve them are shown in parentheses):</p><ol><li>Weeks 1-3: Which Animal Gave Us SARS? (<i>Evolutionary tree construction</i>)</li><li>Weeks 4-5: Was <em>T. rex</em> Just a Big Chicken?&nbsp;(<em>Combinatorial Algorithms</em>)</li></ol><p>In Week 6, you will complete a Bioinformatics Application Challenge to apply evolutionary tree construction algorithms in order to determine the origin of the recent ebola outbreak in Africa.</p><p>As in previous courses, each of these two chapters is accompanied by a Bioinformatics Cartoon created by talented artist Randall Christopher and serving as a chapter header in the Specialization's bestselling <a href="http://bioinformaticsalgorithms.com" target="_blank">print companion</a>. You can find the first chapter's cartoon at the bottom of this message. What do stick bugs and bats have to do with deadly viruses? And how can bioinformatics be used to stop these viruses in their tracks? Start learning today and find out!</p><p><img src="http://bioinformaticsalgorithms.com/images/cover/evolution_cropped.jpg" title="Image: http://bioinformaticsalgorithms.com/images/cover/evolution_cropped.jpg" width="528"></p>

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