Paley S.M., Karp P.D. The Pathway Tools Cellular Overview Diagram and Omics Viewer. Nuc Acids Res, vol. 34, pp. 3771-8, 2006.
The Pathway Tools cellular overview diagram is a visual representation of the biochemical network of an organism. The overview is automatically created from a Pathway/Genome Database describing that organism. The cellular overview includes metabolic, transport and signaling pathways, and other membrane and periplasmic proteins. Pathway Tools supports interrogation and exploration of cellular biochemical networks through the overview diagram. Furthermore, a software component called the Omics Viewer provides visual analysis of whole organism datasets using the overview diagram as an organizing framework. For example, gene expression and metabolomics measurements, alone or in combination, can be painted onto the overview, as can computed whole-organism datasets, such as predicted reaction-flux values. The cellular overview and Omics Viewer provide a mechanism whereby biologists can apply the pattern-recognition capabilities of the human visual system to analyze large scale datasets in a biologically meaningful context. SRI’s BioCyc.org website provides overview diagrams for more than 200 organisms. This article describes enhancements to the overview made since a 1999 publication, including the automatic layout capability, expansion of the cellular machinery that it includes, new semantic zooming and poster-generating capabilities, and extension of the Omics Viewer to support painting of metabolites, animations and zooming to individual pathway diagrams.