Chernoff, Yury O.

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    Gene prediction in novel fungal genomes using an ab initio algorithm with unsupervised training
    (Georgia Institute of Technology, 2008-12) Ter-Hovhannisyan,Vardges ; Lomsadze, Alexandre ; Chernoff, Yury O. ; Borodovsky, Mark
    We describe a new ab initio algorithm, GeneMark-ES version 2, that identifies protein-coding genes in fungal genomes. The algorithm does not require a predetermined training set to estimate parameters of the underlying hidden Markov model (HMM). Instead, the anonymous genomic sequence in question is used as an input for iterative unsupervised training. The algorithm extends our previously developed method tested on genomes of Arabidopsis thaliana, Caenorhabditis elegans, and Drosophila melanogaster. To better reflect features of fungal gene organization, we enhanced the intron submodel to accommodate sequences with and without branch point sites. This design enables the algorithm to work equally well for species with the kinds of variations in splicing mechanisms seen in the fungal phyla Ascomycota, Basidiomycota, and Zygomycota. Upon self-training, the intron submodel switches on in several steps to reach its full complexity. We demonstrate that the algorithm accuracy, both at the exon and the whole gene level, is favorably compared to the accuracy of gene finders that employ supervised training. Application of the new method to known fungal genomes indicates substantial improvement over existing annotations. By eliminating the effort necessary to build comprehensive training sets, the new algorithm can streamline and accelerate the process of annotation in a large number of fungal genome sequencing projects
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    Gene identification in novel eukaryotic genomes by self-training algorithm
    (Georgia Institute of Technology, 2005) Lomsadze, Alexandre ; Ter-Hovhannisyan, Vardges ; Chernoff, Yury O. ; Borodovsky, Mark
    Finding new protein-coding genes is one of the most important goals of eukaryotic genome sequencing projects. However, genomic organization of novel eukaryotic genomes is diverse and ab initio gene finding tools tuned up for previously studied species are rarely suitable for efficacious gene hunting inDNA sequences of a new genome. Gene identification methods based on cDNA and expressed sequence tag (EST) mapping to genomic DNA or those using alignments to closely related genomes rely either on existence of abundant cDNA and EST data and/ or availability on reference genomes. Conventional statistical ab initio methods require large training sets of validated genes for estimating gene model parameters. In practice, neither one of these types of data may be available in sufficient amount until rather late stages of the novel genome sequencing. Nevertheless, we have shown that gene finding in eukaryotic genomes could be carried out in parallel with statistical models estimation directly from yet anonymous genomic DNA. The suggested method of parallelization of gene prediction with the model parameters estimation follows the path of the iterative Viterbi training. Rounds of genomic sequence labeling into coding and non-coding regions are followed by the rounds of model parameters estimation. Several dynamically changing restrictions on the possible range of model parameters are added to filter out fluctuations in the initial steps of the algorithm that could redirect the iteration process away from the biologically relevant point in parameter space. Tests on well-studied eukaryotic genomes have shown that the new method performs comparably or better than conventional methods where the supervised model training precedes the gene prediction step. Several novel genomes have been analyzed and biologically interesting findings are discussed. Thus, a self-training algorithm that had been assumed feasible only for prokaryotic genomes has now been developed for ab initio eukaryotic gene identification.