2023 Study Materials

In general, the resources listed here for the computational test will be somewhat helpful, but never as helpful as the materials covered in miRcore MVP meetings. We list most of the MVP meeting dates that cover each topic in hopes that you can refer to your notes/slides from those lectures.

Conceptual Test (multiple choice)

Immune system


Innate immune system

Adaptive immune system 


Common autoimmune diseases: Type 1 Diabetes, Multiple Sclerosis, Celiac Disease, Crohn’s Disease


Sep. 24, 2022: Groups

Oct. 29, 2022: Immune and autoimmune







Nov. 5, 2022: Statistics



DNA and base pairing rules

DNA replication, transcription, translation

RNA processing (editing and splicing)

Central Dogma

Amino acids and codon relationships

Genetic crosses and Punnett squares

Basic knowledge of technologies measuring DNA sequences, RNA expression, and protein amount

Microarray analysis and electrophoresis


Oct. 8, 2022: DNA

Oct. 15, 2022: RNA

Other resources

Lecture slides from “Computational Biology Camp for High School Students”

DNA RNA Proteins on August 21, 2012

Gene Expressions on August 22, 2012

Additional lecture slides from the one-day camp on January 29, 2013

DNA-RNA-Protein measurement

Genes in Diseases

Computational Test (multiple choice + free response)


GEO2R About Page: Explanations on defining groups, volcano plots and boxplots, analyzing datasets with GEO2R


Oct. 22, 2022: Microarray and GEO

Nov. 5, 2022: Group definition and data validation

Nov. 5, 2022: T-test and GEO2R


String About Page: Explanations on creating String maps, interpreting String maps and enrichment analysis (GO, KEGG), navigating the platform. Goes a bit too in-depth though, would not recommend spending much time studying this.


Nov. 12, 2022: String-db

Nov. 19, 2022: Enriched testing and GO

Dec. 3, 2022: Enriched testing and GO

KEGG Pathways

KEGG About Page: Explanations on KEGG sidebar functions and includes a great diagram of KEGG map notations. Would definitely at least have a look at the map notations.


Dec. 10, 2022: GO KEGG Pathways GeneCards



Oct. 8, 2022: DNA



Dec. 10, 2022: GO KEGG Pathways GeneCards

UCSC Genome Browser


Oct. 8, 2022: DNA

Oct. 15, 2022: RNA

Examples of tasks for the computational test:

  1. Identify a gene related to the increased risk of developing late-onset Alzheimer’s with specific DNA sequences. This gene is on chromosome 19 and one of the four forms of this gene accounts for about 40 percent of all cases of late-onset Alzheimer’s. Write its general symbol, not differentiating the four forms.
  2. Identify the function of the gene  (helpful sites: http://www.genecards.org, http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/gene)
  3. Find its genome position (helpful sites: http://genome.ucsc.edu/cgi-bin/hgGateway, http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/gene)
  4. What is the total number of transcribed sequences?
  5. Find the mRNA sequences. No need to worry about U/T conversion or upper/lower cases. T will be considered as U (helpful sites: http://genome.ucsc.edu/cgi-bin/hgGateway,http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/nuccore).
  6. Find only coding sequences among the mRNA sequences. No need to worry about U/T conversion or upper/lower cases. T will be considered as U (helpful sites: http://genome.ucsc.edu/cgi-bin/hgGateway: use “Genomic Sequence” rather than “mRNA” sequence for this task, http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/nuccore).

Other resources

UCSC Genome Browser Demo (prepared by a student)

Genes in general (from the One-day camp on January 29, 2013)

Using GEO2R to find biomarkers (from Saturday miRcore volunteer meetings)

Disease of focus: Autoimmune Diseases

General Topics



Genes and Environments

Social impact