The main problem in understanding the functional genomics of a disease is the huge scope of biochemical changes that occur when one particular protein is altered. Bioinformatics on the genome (genomics) and the proteome (proteomics) are widely used, but whole-organism data on metabolites (metabonomics) has been more elusive. Nevertheless, the value of metabonomic information has been thoroughly validated, as certain metabolites are already widely used as clinical biomarkers, including creatinine, uric acid, cholesterol and glucose.

Last week, Gene Logic Inc. expanded on its core of gene expression databases by investing in Metabometrix Ltd. (London, U.K.), a startup that