The NCBI Assembly database now provides sequence and metadata for more than 1 million genome assemblies from over 85,000 different species.
Assembly crossed the 1 million genome assemblies milestone on Sunday, April 18, 2021 (Figure 1).
Figure 1. Assembly status and growth. More than 1 million assemblies are now searchable through the NCBI web site (top panel). The number of genome assemblies at NCBI has accelerated rapidly in the past decade.
NCBI Datasets, the new set of services for downloading genome assembly and annotation data (previous Datasets posts), has redesigned and reorganized web pages to make it easier to find and access the services and documentation you need.
RefSeq release 205 is now available online, from the FTP site and through NCBI’s Entrez programming utilities, E-utilities.
This full release incorporates genomic, transcript, and protein data available as of March 1, 2021, and contains 269,975,565 records, including 197,232,209 proteins, 36,514,168 RNAs, and sequences from 108,257 organisms. The release is provided in several directories as a complete dataset and also as divided by logical groupings.
There is a new release of the Read assembly and Annotation Pipeline Tool (RAPT) available from our GitHub site. RAPT is a one-step application for the genome assembly and gene annotation of archaeal and bacterial isolates that can run on your local computer or the Google Cloud Platform (GCP). With this new release, jobs will run twice as fast as with the December release. For example, we have assembled and annotated a Salmonella enterica genome in under an hour on a 16-CPU machine with the new release.
We have also added several new features based on your feedback including:
The –stop-on-errors flag that will stop the process if there evidence from the average nucleotide identity check that there is sample mix-up or contamination by other bacteria.
The ability to accept forward and reverse reads of paired-end runs in separate files. These can be compressed (gzip) files.
Finally, thanks to all who came to our webinar in December and provided their comments! For these who couldn’t join us, you can now view the recording on our YouTube channel.
Are you a researcher who works on gene biology and are interested in alternative splice patterns in your gene or genes of interest? If so, be sure to explore the intron feature evidence available in graphics views of genome assemblies annotated by NCBI. You can view the NCBI evidence used for calling splice variant for genes, add other intron feature evidence tracks, and use new display and filter options that make it easier to interpret the data .
Figure 1. Graphical view of the monoamine oxidase gene (MAOA, MOAB) region on the human X chromosome showing intron features tracks (‘RNA-seq intron features, aggregate’ and ‘Intropolis RNA-Seq intron features’). Mousing-over an intron feature activates a tooltip that shows details such as the number of reads with the splice site, the location on the chromosome, the length of the intron and the donor and acceptor bases at the splice site. The Intropolis track was added through the search feature of the Configure Tracks menu and configured (bottom menu) so that the features were sorted by strand and filtered so that only features with greater than 500 reads appear.
Join us December 2 to learn how to use the Read assembly and Annotation Pipeline Tool (RAPT). With RAPT, you can assemble and annotate a microbial genome right out of the sequencing machine! Provide the short genomic reads or an SRA run on input, and get back the sequence annotated with a complete gene set. The assembly is built with SKESA and annotated with PGAP. In addition, RAPT also verifies the taxonomic assignment of the genome with the Average Nucleotide Identity tool. In this webinar, you will learn how you can run RAPT on your own machine or on the Google Cloud Platform.
Date and time: Wed, December 2, 2020 12:00 PM – 12:45 PM EST
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email with information about attending the webinar. A few days after the live presentation, you can view the recording on the NCBI YouTube channel. You can learn about future webinars on the Webinars and Courses page.
Do you need to download a lot of genomic data? Maybe you need all primate reference genomes or maybe you need just a few really big genomes? Prior to the advent of NCBI Datasets, downloading such a large amount of data could be a frustrating and time consuming experience involving failed downloads and writing custom scripts.
NCBI Datasets makes large genome downloads simpler, faster, and more reliable. You don’t have to write a script. You can be sure you get all the data requested. And sharing the data is easier than ever. Figure 1 shows an example data download process using Datasets.
Figure 1. Downloading and processing genomic data using NCBI Datasets. The example shows downloading the set of RefSeq primate assemblies through the Datasets web interface. Since the downloaded files would exceed 15GB, the file comes as a “dehydrated bag” — a small, easily downloaded, zipped file with metadata and links to download the data. You can “rehydrate” the unzipped dehydrated files — fill them with the corresponding data — using the datasets command-line tool.
We have updated the collection of representative genome assemblies for Bacteria and Archaea. As announced in April, this set is now recalculated three times a year. We selected a total of 11,727 prokaryotic assemblies to represent their respective species among the 192,000 assemblies in RefSeq. Six hundred and thirty-five species were included in the collection for the first time, while 395 organisms from undefined species (such as Bacillus bacterium) were removed. We were able to choose a higher-quality representative than in the previous set for 18% of Bacterial and Archaeal species due to improvements in the logic of the selection that is now based on the assembly length, number of pseudo CDSs called in the PGAP annotation, number of scaffolds, whether Gene IDs are available in the Gene database for the assembly that is currently representative, and type strain status. You can see the exact criteria in order of importance on the Prokaryotic RefSeq Genomes page. Now that the new selection process is in place, we expect future updates to have fewer changes. We will replace a representative only if the assembly has changed RefSeq status or if a substantially better assembly becomes available.
You can download the reference and representative set from the Assembly resource. If you are interested in the annotation on these genomes, you can limit searches to proteins annotated on representative genomes by adding “refseq_select[filter]” to any query in the Protein database. For example, you can find all proteins annotated on representative genomes in the genus Klebsiella by using the query: “Klebsiella[organism] AND refseq_select[filter]“. A BLAST database of proteins annotated on representative genomes will be coming soon. Stay tuned!
NCBI introduces Datasets, a new resource that lets you easily gather data from across NCBI databases. Our first release allows you to find and download genomic sequence and annotation data for all eukaryotic organisms through our user-friendly web interface.
Our web interface also provides an interactive taxonomy tree that lets you browse for your favorite organism. We are currently testing the web interface in the NCBI labs environment. To try it out, enter a taxonomic name or assembly accession and click on the ‘Get Data’ button in the search results panel.
We are making changes to the set of bacterial and archaeal RefSeq Reference and Representative assemblies in February 2020.
We will reduce the number of Reference assemblies to 15 that have annotation provided by outside experts (Table 1) and re-annotate the 105 other current Reference assemblies using the latest Prokaryotic Genome Annotation Pipeline (PGAP) software. The re-annotated assemblies will lose reference status.
We will reassess and revise the set of Representative assemblies so that there is one assembly per species to better reflect the taxonomic diversity of the RefSeq bacterial and archaeal assemblies.