Thousands of missed genes found in bacterial genomes and their analysis with COMBREX

Derrick E. Wood, Henry Lin, Ami Levy-Moonshine, Rajiswari Swaminathan, Yi Chien Chang, Brian P. Anton, Lais Osmani, Martin Steffen, Simon Kasif, Steven L. Salzberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Background: The dramatic reduction in the cost of sequencing has allowed many researchers to join in the effort of sequencing and annotating prokaryotic genomes. Annotation methods vary considerably and may fail to identify some genes. Here we draw attention to a large number of likely genes missing from annotations using common tools such as Glimmer and BLAST.Results: By analyzing 1,474 prokaryotic genome annotations in GenBank, we identify 13,602 likely missed genes that are homologs to non-hypothetical proteins, and 11,792 likely missed genes that are homologs only to hypothetical proteins, yet have supporting evidence of their protein-coding nature from COMBREX, a newly created gene function database. We also estimate the likelihood that each potential missing gene found is a genuine protein-coding gene using COMBREX.Conclusions: Our analysis of the causes of missed genes suggests that larger annotation centers tend to produce annotations with fewer missed genes than smaller centers, and many of the missed genes are short genes <300 bp. Over 1,000 of the likely missed genes could be associated with phenotype information available in COMBREX. 359 of these genes, found in pathogenic organisms, may be potential targets for pharmaceutical research. The newly identified genes are available on COMBREX's website.Reviewers: This article was reviewed by Daniel Haft, Arcady Mushegian, and M. Pilar Francino (nominated by David Ardell).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number37
JournalBiology direct
Volume7
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 30 2012

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Modeling and Simulation
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Applied Mathematics

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    Wood, D. E., Lin, H., Levy-Moonshine, A., Swaminathan, R., Chang, Y. C., Anton, B. P., Osmani, L., Steffen, M., Kasif, S., & Salzberg, S. L. (2012). Thousands of missed genes found in bacterial genomes and their analysis with COMBREX. Biology direct, 7, [37]. https://doi.org/10.1186/1745-6150-7-37