Applera Corporation has announced that human, mouse, and rat genomic DNA sequence data are now freely accessible online through the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), with Web links to corresponding microarrays and TaqMan® Gene Expression and SNP Genotyping Assays from Applera's Applied Biosystems Group.
These data and products, including genomic information generated by Applera's Celera Genomics Group, provide the life science research community with resources to further advance the understanding of human disease and the development of targeted diagnostics and therapeutics.
“As focus has shifted from data generation to understanding the complexity of gene function, life scientists are confronted with the challenge of locating genomic data of value and the complementary wet-biology products that enable experimentation,” said Dennis A. Gilbert, Ph.D., Chief Scientific Officer, Applied Biosystems.
“We expect that academic and commercial researchers now will be better equipped to cost-effectively move their research forward.”
“For example, by utilizing our freely available SNPbrowser™ software, researchers can simultaneously mine Celera, NCBI's dbSNP, and International HapMap Project data to identify SNPs of interest and seamlessly order one of our ready-to-use TaqMan® SNP Genotyping Assays for human disease association studies and other applications.”
The data release to the NCBI, a division of the National Library of Medicine at the National Institutes of Health, includes the trace files of 65 million Celera sequencing reads from the human, mouse, and rat genomes.
These have been deposited into NCBI's GenBank database, along with the respective genome assemblies. In addition, seven million human and mouse single nucleotide polymorphisms have been added to the NCBI SNP database (dbSNP).
Included as part of these data are Celera Genomics' human, mouse, and rat genome assembly contigs, which will be available as alternative assemblies in upcoming NCBI data releases.
To increase the value and usability of these data assets, Applied Biosystems has designed 2.5 million gene expression and SNP genotyping assays.
These data are also the basis of Applied Biosystems' proprietary microarrays for human, mouse, and rat whole genome analysis.
In addition to the benefits that Celera Genomics' human sequence and variation information could provide the research community, the additional mouse and rat data provide a resource for scientists studying these model organisms.
For example, while the currently available mouse genome was derived from sequencing a single mouse strain, the Celera mouse data were derived from sequencing four additional strains of mice from those of the public sequencing efforts.
These data offer information for ongoing SNP identification, gene annotation, and assembly projects. In addition, the availability of an additional eight million traces of rat sequence generated by Celera is expected to offer a resource to researchers continuing work on the rat genome project, which has reached the end of its public funding.
The data release, plans for which were previously announced, is consistent with Celera Genomics' communications over the past three years regarding its focus on developing its therapeutics business and is intended to facilitate sales of royalty-bearing Applied Biosystems group products.
The Celera Genomics group collects royalties on some products sold by the Applied Biosystems group, including TaqMan assays and various genotyping and microarray products, pursuant to a marketing and distribution agreement entered into in April 2002.