BLAST for beginners
This tutorial is designed as a quick introduction to the BLAST family of sequence analysis programs.

These slides show a progression of steps in accessing and using BLAST, beginning at the home page for the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) ( ) and ending at PubMed, a tool for searching scientific literature. In this series, a nucleotide sequence is submitted and compared, using blastn, to GenBank, a comprehensive database of biological sequences. To search with an amino acid sequence, use blastp.

Before you begin, here are some helpful hints:

  • These pages work best with Netscape (6.0 or later) and Internet Explorer versions, 5.0 and later.
  • In most slides the green arrows point to the button or link that would be selected in an actual BLAST search. Click the green arrows to move to the next slide.
  • To see information repeated, reload the page, or return to a previous slide by using the "Back" button on your browser.
  • In most cases the links shown on the following slides are not active, only the green arrrows have active links.
  • It's helpful to have two or more web browser windows open at the same time so that you can view the tutorial in one window and the live site in the other.
    This series is not meant as a comprehensive description of the BLAST programs, merely a quick guide to help you get started. For more information about BLAST, see

    Click on the green arrow to begin

    Copyright Geospiza, Inc.

  • Funding for this project was provided by the National Science Foundation's Course, Curriculum, and Laboratory Improvement Program under grants DUE-0088153 and DUE 0127599
    Geospiza, Inc.Geospiza Education. Copyright © Geospiza, Inc. All rights reserved.