Understanding Hierarchical Clustering Results by Interactive Exploration of Dendrograms: A Case Study with Genomic Microarray Data (2002)
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Hierarchical clustering is widely used to find patterns in multi-dimensional datasets, especially for genomic microarray data. Finding groups of genes with similar expression patterns can lead to better understanding of the functions of genes. Early software tools produced only printed results, while newer ones enabled some online exploration. We describe four general techniques that could be used in interactive explorations of clustering algorithms: (1) overview of the entire dataset, coupled with a detail view so that high-level patterns and hot spots can be easily found and examined, (2) dynamic query controls so that users can restrict the number of clusters they view at a time and show those clusters more clearly, (3) coordinated displays: the overview mosaic has a bi-directional link to 2-dimensional scattergrams, (4) cluster comparisons to allow researchers to see how different clustering algorithms group the genes.