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a catalog of biological databases

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General information

Description: The goal of the GENCODE project is to identify and classify all gene features in the human and mouse genomes with high accuracy based on biological evidence, and to release these annotations for the benefit of biomedical research and genome interpretation.
Year founded: 2006
Last update: 2019-01-09
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Country/Region: United Kingdom
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Contact information

University/Institution: European Bioinformatics Institute
Address: European Bioinformatics Institute, Wellcome Genome Campus, Hinxton, Cambridge CB10 1SD, UK
City: Cambridge
Country/Region: United Kingdom
Contact name (PI/Team): Paul Flicek
Contact email (PI/Helpdesk):

Record metadata

Created on: 2019-01-04
Curated by:
Lina Ma [2019-07-31]
Dong Zou [2019-01-11]
Dong Zou [2019-01-04]


All databases:
25/4549 (99.472%)
Gene genome and annotation:
14/1211 (98.927%)
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GENCODE reference annotation for the human and mouse genomes. [PMID: 30357393]
Frankish A, Diekhans M, Ferreira AM, Johnson R, Jungreis I, Loveland J, Mudge JM, Sisu C, Wright J, Armstrong J, Barnes I, Berry A, Bignell A, Carbonell Sala S, Chrast J, Cunningham F, Di Domenico T, Donaldson S, Fiddes IT, García Girón C, Gonzalez JM, Grego T, Hardy M, Hourlier T, Hunt T, Izuogu OG, Lagarde J, Martin FJ, Martínez L, Mohanan S, Muir P, Navarro FCP, Parker A, Pei B, Pozo F, Ruffier M, Schmitt BM, Stapleton E, Suner MM, Sycheva I, Uszczynska-Ratajczak B, Xu J, Yates A, Zerbino D, Zhang Y, Aken B, Choudhary JS, Gerstein M, Guigó R, Hubbard TJP, Kellis M, Paten B, Reymond A, Tress ML, Flicek P.

The accurate identification and description of the genes in the human and mouse genomes is a fundamental requirement for high quality analysis of data informing both genome biology and clinical genomics. Over the last 15 years, the GENCODE consortium has been producing reference quality gene annotations to provide this foundational resource. The GENCODE consortium includes both experimental and computational biology groups who work together to improve and extend the GENCODE gene annotation. Specifically, we generate primary data, create bioinformatics tools and provide analysis to support the work of expert manual gene annotators and automated gene annotation pipelines. In addition, manual and computational annotation workflows use any and all publicly available data and analysis, along with the research literature to identify and characterise gene loci to the highest standard. GENCODE gene annotations are accessible via the Ensembl and UCSC Genome Browsers, the Ensembl FTP site, Ensembl Biomart, Ensembl Perl and REST APIs as well as

Nucleic Acids Res. 2019:47(D1) | 47 Citations (from Europe PMC, 2020-02-08)
Improving GENCODE reference gene annotation using a high-stringency proteogenomics workflow. [PMID: 27250503]
Wright JC, Mudge J, Weisser H, Barzine MP, Gonzalez JM, Brazma A, Choudhary JS, Harrow J.

Complete annotation of the human genome is indispensable for medical research. The GENCODE consortium strives to provide this, augmenting computational and experimental evidence with manual annotation. The rapidly developing field of proteogenomics provides evidence for the translation of genes into proteins and can be used to discover and refine gene models. However, for both the proteomics and annotation groups, there is a lack of guidelines for integrating this data. Here we report a stringent workflow for the interpretation of proteogenomic data that could be used by the annotation community to interpret novel proteogenomic evidence. Based on reprocessing of three large-scale publicly available human data sets, we show that a conservative approach, using stringent filtering is required to generate valid identifications. Evidence has been found supporting 16 novel protein-coding genes being added to GENCODE. Despite this many peptide identifications in pseudogenes cannot be annotated due to the absence of orthogonal supporting evidence.

Nat Commun. 2016:7() | 24 Citations (from Europe PMC, 2020-02-08)
Comparison of GENCODE and RefSeq gene annotation and the impact of reference geneset on variant effect prediction. [PMID: 26110515]
Frankish A, Uszczynska B, Ritchie GR, Gonzalez JM, Pervouchine D, Petryszak R, Mudge JM, Fonseca N, Brazma A, Guigo R, Harrow J.

A vast amount of DNA variation is being identified by increasingly large-scale exome and genome sequencing projects. To be useful, variants require accurate functional annotation and a wide range of tools are available to this end. McCarthy et al recently demonstrated the large differences in prediction of loss-of-function (LoF) variation when RefSeq and Ensembl transcripts are used for annotation, highlighting the importance of the reference transcripts on which variant functional annotation is based.We describe a detailed analysis of the similarities and differences between the gene and transcript annotation in the GENCODE and RefSeq genesets. We demonstrate that the GENCODE Comprehensive set is richer in alternative splicing, novel CDSs, novel exons and has higher genomic coverage than RefSeq, while the GENCODE Basic set is very similar to RefSeq. Using RNAseq data we show that exons and introns unique to one geneset are expressed at a similar level to those common to both. We present evidence that the differences in gene annotation lead to large differences in variant annotation where GENCODE and RefSeq are used as reference transcripts, although this is predominantly confined to non-coding transcripts and UTR sequence, with at most ~30% of LoF variants annotated discordantly. We also describe an investigation of dominant transcript expression, showing that it both supports the utility of the GENCODE Basic set in providing a smaller set of more highly expressed transcripts and provides a useful, biologically-relevant filter for further reducing the complexity of the transcriptome.The reference transcripts selected for variant functional annotation do have a large effect on the outcome. The GENCODE Comprehensive transcripts contain more exons, have greater genomic coverage and capture many more variants than RefSeq in both genome and exome datasets, while the GENCODE Basic set shows a higher degree of concordance with RefSeq and has fewer unique features. We propose that the GENCODE Comprehensive set has great utility for the discovery of new variants with functional potential, while the GENCODE Basic set is more suitable for applications demanding less complex interpretation of functional variants.

BMC Genomics. 2015:16 Suppl 8() | 18 Citations (from Europe PMC, 2020-02-08)
Creating reference gene annotation for the mouse C57BL6/J genome assembly. [PMID: 26187010]
Mudge JM, Harrow J.

Annotation on the reference genome of the C57BL6/J mouse has been an ongoing project ever since the draft genome was first published. Initially, the principle focus was on the identification of all protein-coding genes, although today the importance of describing long non-coding RNAs, small RNAs, and pseudogenes is recognized. Here, we describe the progress of the GENCODE mouse annotation project, which combines manual annotation from the HAVANA group with Ensembl computational annotation, alongside experimental and in silico validation pipelines from other members of the consortium. We discuss the more recent incorporation of next-generation sequencing datasets into this workflow, including the usage of mass-spectrometry data to potentially identify novel protein-coding genes. Finally, we will outline how the C57BL6/J genebuild can be used to gain insights into the variant sites that distinguish different mouse strains and species.

Mamm Genome. 2015:26(9-10) | 76 Citations (from Europe PMC, 2020-02-08)
The GENCODE pseudogene resource. [PMID: 22951037]
Pei B, Sisu C, Frankish A, Howald C, Habegger L, Mu XJ, Harte R, Balasubramanian S, Tanzer A, Diekhans M, Reymond A, Hubbard TJ, Harrow J, Gerstein MB.

Pseudogenes have long been considered as nonfunctional genomic sequences. However, recent evidence suggests that many of them might have some form of biological activity, and the possibility of functionality has increased interest in their accurate annotation and integration with functional genomics data.As part of the GENCODE annotation of the human genome, we present the first genome-wide pseudogene assignment for protein-coding genes, based on both large-scale manual annotation and in silico pipelines. A key aspect of this coupled approach is that it allows us to identify pseudogenes in an unbiased fashion as well as untangle complex events through manual evaluation. We integrate the pseudogene annotations with the extensive ENCODE functional genomics information. In particular, we determine the expression level, transcription-factor and RNA polymerase II binding, and chromatin marks associated with each pseudogene. Based on their distribution, we develop simple statistical models for each type of activity, which we validate with large-scale RT-PCR-Seq experiments. Finally, we compare our pseudogenes with conservation and variation data from primate alignments and the 1000 Genomes project, producing lists of pseudogenes potentially under selection.At one extreme, some pseudogenes possess conventional characteristics of functionality; these may represent genes that have recently died. On the other hand, we find interesting patterns of partial activity, which may suggest that dead genes are being resurrected as functioning non-coding RNAs. The activity data of each pseudogene are stored in an associated resource, psiDR, which will be useful for the initial identification of potentially functional pseudogenes.

Genome Biol. 2012:13(9) | 142 Citations (from Europe PMC, 2020-02-08)
The GENCODE v7 catalog of human long noncoding RNAs: analysis of their gene structure, evolution, and expression. [PMID: 22955988]
Derrien T, Johnson R, Bussotti G, Tanzer A, Djebali S, Tilgner H, Guernec G, Martin D, Merkel A, Knowles DG, Lagarde J, Veeravalli L, Ruan X, Ruan Y, Lassmann T, Carninci P, Brown JB, Lipovich L, Gonzalez JM, Thomas M, Davis CA, Shiekhattar R, Gingeras TR, Hubbard TJ, Notredame C, Harrow J, Guigó R.

The human genome contains many thousands of long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs). While several studies have demonstrated compelling biological and disease roles for individual examples, analytical and experimental approaches to investigate these genes have been hampered by the lack of comprehensive lncRNA annotation. Here, we present and analyze the most complete human lncRNA annotation to date, produced by the GENCODE consortium within the framework of the ENCODE project and comprising 9277 manually annotated genes producing 14,880 transcripts. Our analyses indicate that lncRNAs are generated through pathways similar to that of protein-coding genes, with similar histone-modification profiles, splicing signals, and exon/intron lengths. In contrast to protein-coding genes, however, lncRNAs display a striking bias toward two-exon transcripts, they are predominantly localized in the chromatin and nucleus, and a fraction appear to be preferentially processed into small RNAs. They are under stronger selective pressure than neutrally evolving sequences-particularly in their promoter regions, which display levels of selection comparable to protein-coding genes. Importantly, about one-third seem to have arisen within the primate lineage. Comprehensive analysis of their expression in multiple human organs and brain regions shows that lncRNAs are generally lower expressed than protein-coding genes, and display more tissue-specific expression patterns, with a large fraction of tissue-specific lncRNAs expressed in the brain. Expression correlation analysis indicates that lncRNAs show particularly striking positive correlation with the expression of antisense coding genes. This GENCODE annotation represents a valuable resource for future studies of lncRNAs.

Genome Res. 2012:22(9) | 1919 Citations (from Europe PMC, 2020-02-08)
GENCODE: the reference human genome annotation for The ENCODE Project. [PMID: 22955987]
Harrow J, Frankish A, Gonzalez JM, Tapanari E, Diekhans M, Kokocinski F, Aken BL, Barrell D, Zadissa A, Searle S, Barnes I, Bignell A, Boychenko V, Hunt T, Kay M, Mukherjee G, Rajan J, Despacio-Reyes G, Saunders G, Steward C, Harte R, Lin M, Howald C, Tanzer A, Derrien T, Chrast J, Walters N, Balasubramanian S, Pei B, Tress M, Rodriguez JM, Ezkurdia I, van Baren J, Brent M, Haussler D, Kellis M, Valencia A, Reymond A, Gerstein M, Guigó R, Hubbard TJ.

The GENCODE Consortium aims to identify all gene features in the human genome using a combination of computational analysis, manual annotation, and experimental validation. Since the first public release of this annotation data set, few new protein-coding loci have been added, yet the number of alternative splicing transcripts annotated has steadily increased. The GENCODE 7 release contains 20,687 protein-coding and 9640 long noncoding RNA loci and has 33,977 coding transcripts not represented in UCSC genes and RefSeq. It also has the most comprehensive annotation of long noncoding RNA (lncRNA) loci publicly available with the predominant transcript form consisting of two exons. We have examined the completeness of the transcript annotation and found that 35% of transcriptional start sites are supported by CAGE clusters and 62% of protein-coding genes have annotated polyA sites. Over one-third of GENCODE protein-coding genes are supported by peptide hits derived from mass spectrometry spectra submitted to Peptide Atlas. New models derived from the Illumina Body Map 2.0 RNA-seq data identify 3689 new loci not currently in GENCODE, of which 3127 consist of two exon models indicating that they are possibly unannotated long noncoding loci. GENCODE 7 is publicly available from and via the Ensembl and UCSC Genome Browsers.

Genome Res. 2012:22(9) | 1739 Citations (from Europe PMC, 2020-02-08)
The GENCODE exome: sequencing the complete human exome. [PMID: 21364695]
Coffey AJ, Kokocinski F, Calafato MS, Scott CE, Palta P, Drury E, Joyce CJ, Leproust EM, Harrow J, Hunt S, Lehesjoki AE, Turner DJ, Hubbard TJ, Palotie A.

Sequencing the coding regions, the exome, of the human genome is one of the major current strategies to identify low frequency and rare variants associated with human disease traits. So far, the most widely used commercial exome capture reagents have mainly targeted the consensus coding sequence (CCDS) database. We report the design of an extended set of targets for capturing the complete human exome, based on annotation from the GENCODE consortium. The extended set covers an additional 5594 genes and 10.3 Mb compared with the current CCDS-based sets. The additional regions include potential disease genes previously inaccessible to exome resequencing studies, such as 43 genes linked to ion channel activity and 70 genes linked to protein kinase activity. In total, the new GENCODE exome set developed here covers 47.9 Mb and performed well in sequence capture experiments. In the sample set used in this study, we identified over 5000 SNP variants more in the GENCODE exome target (24%) than in the CCDS-based exome sequencing.

Eur J Hum Genet. 2011:19(7) | 35 Citations (from Europe PMC, 2020-02-08)
GENCODE: producing a reference annotation for ENCODE. [PMID: 16925838]
Harrow J, Denoeud F, Frankish A, Reymond A, Chen CK, Chrast J, Lagarde J, Gilbert JG, Storey R, Swarbreck D, Rossier C, Ucla C, Hubbard T, Antonarakis SE, Guigo R.

BACKGROUND: The GENCODE consortium was formed to identify and map all protein-coding genes within the ENCODE regions. This was achieved by a combination of initial manual annotation by the HAVANA team, experimental validation by the GENCODE consortium and a refinement of the annotation based on these experimental results. RESULTS: The GENCODE gene features are divided into eight different categories of which only the first two (known and novel coding sequence) are confidently predicted to be protein-coding genes. 5' rapid amplification of cDNA ends (RACE) and RT-PCR were used to experimentally verify the initial annotation. Of the 420 coding loci tested, 229 RACE products have been sequenced. They supported 5' extensions of 30 loci and new splice variants in 50 loci. In addition, 46 loci without evidence for a coding sequence were validated, consisting of 31 novel and 15 putative transcripts. We assessed the comprehensiveness of the GENCODE annotation by attempting to validate all the predicted exon boundaries outside the GENCODE annotation. Out of 1,215 tested in a subset of the ENCODE regions, 14 novel exon pairs were validated, only two of them in intergenic regions. CONCLUSION: In total, 487 loci, of which 434 are coding, have been annotated as part of the GENCODE reference set available from the UCSC browser. Comparison of GENCODE annotation with RefSeq and ENSEMBL show only 40% of GENCODE exons are contained within the two sets, which is a reflection of the high number of alternative splice forms with unique exons annotated. Over 50% of coding loci have been experimentally verified by 5' RACE for EGASP and the GENCODE collaboration is continuing to refine its annotation of 1% human genome with the aid of experimental validation.

Genome Biol. 2006:7 Suppl 1() | 282 Citations (from Europe PMC, 2020-02-08)