Learn to use KEGG the Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes, an extensive and widely used resource containing information on genes and pathways in a wide range of species. KEGG curates, integrates, and displays information that enables deep understanding of biological systems. Genes, ligands that interact with genes, pathways in which they participate, descriptive terms that clarify the relationships of all of these aspects come together in this fundamental resource. KEGG is a knowledgebase with application to many areas of biological investigation from basic research, to pharmaceutical discovery, and environmental investigations as well. In this introductory tutorial, you will learn about the foundations and features of KEGG, enabling you to efficiently use one of the foundational resources for systems biology.

You will learn:

  • how to navigate KEGG and to perform effective searches on topics of interest
  • how to set the displays for efficient access to the data of interest to you
  • how to customize the colors of displays to represent your own data
  • how to investigate reference and disease pathways, genes, ligands, drugs, and more


This tutorial is a part of the tutorial group Interaction resources. You might find the other tutorials in the group interesting:

Pathway Interaction Database: A resource of pathway and network data and displays

MINT: Molecular Interaction Database

Cytoscape: An open-source software platform used for visualization and analysis of molecular interaction and network data

BiologicalNetworks: Analyze and visualize molecular interaction networks

BioSystems: Database of Biological Systems

Reactome Legacy: Older version of the current Reactome knowledgebase of biological processes.

Reactome: Knowledgebase of biological processes

GeneMANIA: GeneMANIA: Fast Gene Function Predictions

GenMAPP: A freely available open source software application for visualizing microarray data in the context of biological pathways.

VisANT: A web-based or downloadable software platform used for visualization and analysis of networks and interaction pathways

InterPro: A comprehensive protein signature resource

IntAct protein interaction database: IntAct is an open source database and analysis resource for protein interaction data


Pathways and Interactions : Tools that are involved with protein interactions and pathway features. Some tools are primarily repositories and some offer analysis options.


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Recent BioMed Central research articles citing this resource

Díaz-Fernández David et al., Utilization of xylose by engineered strains of Ashbya gossypii for the production of microbial oils. Biotechnology for Biofuels (2017) doi:10.1186/s13068-016-0685-9

Zhu Qianglong et al., Comparative transcriptome analysis of two contrasting watermelon genotypes during fruit development and ripening Transcriptomic methods. BMC Genomics (2017) doi:10.1186/s12864-016-3442-3

Caragata P. E. et al., The transcriptome of the mosquito Aedes fluviatilis (Diptera: Culicidae), and transcriptional changes associated with its native Wolbachia infection Multicellular invertebrate genomics. BMC Genomics (2017) doi:10.1186/s12864-016-3441-4

Oh Ju Kyoung et al., Effects of Bacillus subtilis CSL2 on the composition and functional diversity of the faecal microbiota of broiler chickens challenged with Salmonella Gallinarum. Journal of Animal Science and Biotechnology (2017) doi:10.1186/s40104-016-0130-8

Jose Lyju V. et al., Metagenomic insights into the rumen microbial fibrolytic enzymes in Indian crossbred cattle fed finger millet straw. AMB Express (2017) doi:10.1186/s13568-016-0310-0