The service maintains an ontology of terms describing concepts important in genetic research and related biological science. It's structure defines standard language for concepts from the topic domain, with annotations describing the meanings and proper uses of the terms. This standardization of language use encourages consistent treatment and discussion across genetic research efforts.
API methods support access to the ontology's list of standard terms for proteins and descriptive properties, with annotations about correct usage and taxonomic relationships between terms, including those with broader meanings, narrower meanings, and related usage. Methods allow control of the scope of a result set depending on an application's need for complete or streamlined data.