Microarray technology enables researchers to investigate the expression of several thousand genes simultaneously. The whole transcriptional response of these genes in normal cells or tissue, in disease condition, as an response to biological, genetical or chemical stimuli or during normal biological processes such as cell cycle or embryonic development can be investigated. This leads to a huge amount of data, from which the relevant information has to be extracted by statistical and computational methods. Several software packages for the analysis of gene expression data are available, both commercially and freely. They differ particularly with regard to the implemented analytical methods, the graphical display and the manageability. In this paper the commercial software packages arraySCOUT, GeneSpring and Spotfire DecisionSite for Functional Genomics are compared and their applicability for analysis of gene expression data is studied. Small artificial and application test datasets are used to compare the computational results of the software packages. As far as possible results are verified with standard statistical software package SAS.
Keywords: microarray, software package, gene expression analysis, expression profiling
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