How to handle variants in a reference genome
When talking about genome sequencing the human genome project is one of the best known projects. “Building” a reference genome that helps to identify disease-causing mutations is only one of many goals for the human reference genome.
But I am sure that all of you already asked the question: how can a reference genome even exists? On earth we have more than 7 billion people and among that many different characteristics. So how can one human reference serve for all mankind?
The Global Alliance, lead by David Haussler, recently won a $1 million grant to create a graphical model of the human genome (BioTechniques). The graph model should help to visualise variants as alternate pathways. Like that a more comprehensive picture of “naturally occuring variants” and disease causing variants might be gained. To support this approach, they got access to 300 complete human genome sequences from the Broad Institute in Cambridge.
From my point of view this is a great idea and I hope it helps to further pave the way how the massive amounts of sequencing data can be handled and interpreted in the near future!
Read the complete article at BioTechniques.com