Genome biology (Genome Biol)

Publisher: BioMed Central

Journal description

Genome Biology publishes articles from the full spectrum of biology. Subjects covered include any aspect of molecular, cellular, organismal or population biology studied from a genomic perspective, as well as genomics, proteomics, bioinformatics, genomic methods (including structure prediction), computational biology, sequence analysis (including large-scale and cross-genome analyses), comparative biology and evolution.

Current impact factor: 10.47

Impact Factor Rankings

2015 Impact Factor Available summer 2015
2013 / 2014 Impact Factor 10.465
2012 Impact Factor 10.288
2011 Impact Factor 9.036
2010 Impact Factor 6.885

Impact factor over time

Impact factor

Additional details

5-year impact 0.00
Cited half-life 0.00
Immediacy index 0.00
Eigenfactor 0.00
Article influence 0.00
Website Genome Biology website
Other titles Genome biology (Online), Genome biology,, GB. C
ISSN 1465-6914
OCLC 49210873
Material type Document, Periodical, Internet resource
Document type Internet Resource, Computer File, Journal / Magazine / Newspaper

Publisher details

BioMed Central

  • Pre-print
    • Author can archive a pre-print version
  • Post-print
    • Author can archive a post-print version
  • Conditions
    • Publisher's version/PDF may be used
    • Eligible UK authors may deposit in OpenDepot
    • Creative Commons Attribution License
    • Copy of License must accompany any deposit.
    • All titles are open access journals
    • 'BioMed Central' is an imprint of 'Springer Verlag (Germany)'
  • Classification
    ‚Äč green

Publications in this journal

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Protein domains display a range of structural diversity, with numerous additions and deletions of secondary structural elements between related domains. We have observed a small number of cases of surprising large-scale deletions of core elements of structural domains. We propose a new concept called domain atrophy, where protein domains lose a significant number of core structural elements. Here, we implement a new pipeline to systematically identify new cases of domain atrophy across all known protein sequences. The output of this pipeline was carefully checked by hand, which filtered out partial domain instances that were unlikely to represent true domain atrophy due to misannotations or un-annotated sequence fragments. We identify 75 cases of domain atrophy, of which eight cases are found in a three-dimensional protein structure and 67 cases have been inferred based on mapping to a known homologous structure. Domains with structural variations include ancient folds such as the TIM-barrel and Rossmann folds. Most of these domains are observed to show structural loss that does not affect their functional sites. Our analysis has significantly increased the known cases of domain atrophy. We discuss specific instances of domain atrophy and see that there has often been a compensatory mechanism that helps to maintain the stability of the partial domain. Our study indicates that although domain atrophy is an extremely rare phenomenon, protein domains under certain circumstances can tolerate extreme mutations giving rise to partial, but functional, domains.
    Genome biology 04/2015; 16(1):88. DOI:10.1186/s13059-015-0655-8
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    ABSTRACT: Technologies for single-cell sequencing are improving steadily. A recent study describes a new method for interrogating all coding sequences of the human genome at single-cell resolution. See related research by Leung et al.,
    Genome biology 04/2015; 16(1):86. DOI:10.1186/s13059-015-0650-0
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    ABSTRACT: In the past decade, several countries have seen gradual replacement of endemic multi-resistant healthcare-associated methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) with clones that are more susceptible to antibiotic treatment. One example is Singapore, where MRSA ST239, the dominant clone since molecular profiling of MRSA began in the mid-1980s, has been replaced by ST22 isolates belonging to EMRSA-15, a recently emerged pandemic lineage originating from Europe. We investigated the population structure of MRSA in Singaporean hospitals spanning three decades, using whole genome sequencing. Applying Bayesian phylogenetic methods we report that prior to the introduction of ST22, the ST239 MRSA population in Singapore originated from multiple introductions from the surrounding region; it was frequently transferred within the healthcare system resulting in a heterogeneous hospital population. Following the introduction of ST22 around the beginning of the millennium, this clone spread rapidly through Singaporean hospitals, supplanting the endemic ST239 population. Coalescent analysis revealed that although the genetic diversity of ST239 initially decreased as ST22 became more dominant, from 2007 onwards the genetic diversity of ST239 began to increase once more, which was not associated with the emergence of a sub-clone of ST239. Comparative genomic analysis of the accessory genome of the extant ST239 population identified that the Arginine Catabolic Mobile Element arose multiple times, thereby introducing genes associated with enhanced skin colonization into this population. Our results clearly demonstrate that, alongside clinical practice and antibiotic usage, competition between clones also has an important role in driving the evolution of nosocomial pathogen populations.
    Genome biology 04/2015; 16(1):81. DOI:10.1186/s13059-015-0643-z
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    ABSTRACT: Gene content differences in human gut microbes can lead to inter-individual phenotypic variations such as digestive capacity. It is unclear whether gene content variation is caused by differences in microbial species composition or by the presence of different strains of the same species; the extent of gene content variation in the latter is unknown. Unlike pan-genome studies of cultivable strains, the use of metagenomic data can provide an unbiased view of structural variation of gut bacterial strains by measuring them in their natural habitats, the gut of each individual in this case, representing native boundaries between gut bacterial populations. We analyzed publicly available metagenomics data from fecal samples to characterize inter-individual variation in gut bacterial species. A comparison of 11 abundant gut bacterial species showed that the gene content of strains from the same species differed, on average, by 13% between individuals. This number is based on gene deletions only and represents a lower limit, yet the variation is already in similar range as observed between completely sequenced strains of cultivable species. We show that accessory genes that differ considerably between individuals can encode important functions, such as polysaccharide utilization and capsular polysaccharide synthesis loci. Metagenomics can yield insights into gene content variation of strains in complex communities, which cannot be predicted by phylogenetic marker genes alone. The large degree of inter-individual variability in gene content implies that strain resolution must be considered in order to fully assess the functional potential of an individual's human gut microbiome.
    Genome biology 04/2015; 16(1):82. DOI:10.1186/s13059-015-0646-9
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    ABSTRACT: Aging and sun exposure are the leading causes of skin cancer. It has been shown that epigenetic changes, such as DNA methylation, are well established mechanisms for cancer, and also have emerging roles in aging and common disease. Here, we directly ask whether DNA methylation is altered following skin aging and/or chronic sun exposure in humans. We compare epidermis and dermis of both sun-protected and sun-exposed skin derived from younger subjects (under 35 years old) and older subjects (over 60 years old), using the Infinium HumanMethylation450 array and whole genome bisulfite sequencing. We observe large blocks of the genome that are hypomethylated in older, sun-exposed epidermal samples, with the degree of hypomethylation associated with clinical measures of photo-aging. We replicate these findings using whole genome bisulfite sequencing, comparing epidermis from an additional set of younger and older subjects. These blocks largely overlap known hypomethylated blocks in colon cancer and we observe that these same regions are similarly hypomethylated in squamous cell carcinoma samples. These data implicate large scale epigenomic change in mediating the effects of environmental damage with photo-aging.
    Genome biology 04/2015; 16(1):80. DOI:10.1186/s13059-015-0644-y
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    ABSTRACT: Pouchitis is common after ileal pouch-anal anastomosis (IPAA) surgery for ulcerative colitis (UC). Similarly to inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), both host genetics and the microbiota are implicated in its pathogenesis. We use the IPAA model of IBD to associate mucosal host gene expression with mucosal microbiomes and clinical outcomes. We analyze host transcriptomic data and 16S rRNA gene sequencing data from paired biopsies from IPAA patients with UC and familial adenomatous polyposis. To achieve power for a genome-wide microbiome-transcriptome association study, we use principal component analysis for transcript and clade reduction, and identify significant covariation between clades and transcripts. Host transcripts covary primarily with biopsy location and inflammation, while microbes covary primarily with antibiotic use. Transcript-microbe associations are surprisingly modest, but the most strongly microbially-associated host transcript pattern is enriched for complement cascade genes and for the interleukin-12 pathway. Activation of these host processes is inversely correlated with Sutterella, Akkermansia, Bifidobacteria, and Roseburia abundance, and positively correlated with Escherichia abundance. This study quantifies the effects of inflammation, antibiotic use, and biopsy location upon the microbiome and host transcriptome during pouchitis. Understanding these effects is essential for basic biological insights as well as for well-designed and adequately-powered studies. Additionally, our study provides a method for profiling host-microbe interactions with appropriate statistical power using high-throughput sequencing, and suggests that cross-sectional changes in gut epithelial transcription are not a major component of the host-microbiome regulatory interface during pouchitis.
    Genome biology 04/2015; 16(1):67. DOI:10.1186/s13059-015-0637-x
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    ABSTRACT: The liver fluke Fasciola hepatica is a major pathogen of livestock worldwide, causing huge economic losses to agriculture, as well as 2.4 million human infections annually. Here we provide a draft genome for F. hepatica, which we find to be amongst the largest known pathogen genomes at 1.3Gb. This size cannot be explained by genome duplication or expansion of a single repeat element, and remains a paradox given the burden it may impose on egg production necessary to transmit infection. Despite the potential for inbreeding by facultative self-fertilization, substantial levels of polymorphism were found, which highlights the evolutionary potential for rapid adaptation to changes in host availability, climate change or to drug or vaccine interventions. Non-synonymous polymorphisms were elevated in genes shared with parasitic taxa, which may be particularly relevant for the ability of the parasite to adapt to a broad range of definitive mammalian and intermediate molluscan hosts. Large-scale transcriptional changes, particularly within expanded protease and tubulin families, were found as the parasite migrated from the gut, across the peritoneum and through the liver to mature in the bile ducts. We identify novel members of anti-oxidant and detoxification pathways and defined their differential expression through infection, which may explain the stage-specific efficacy of different anthelmintic drugs. The genome analysis described here provides new insights into the evolution of this important pathogen, its adaptation to the host environment and external selection pressures. This analysis also provides a platform for research into novel drugs and vaccines.
    Genome biology 04/2015; 16(1):71. DOI:10.1186/s13059-015-0632-2
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    ABSTRACT: To understand the heterogeneous behaviors of individual cancer cells, it is essential to investigate gene expression levels as well as their divergence between different individual cells. Recent advances in next-generation sequencing-related technologies have enabled us to conduct a single-cell RNA-Seq analysis of a series of lung adenocarcinoma cell lines. We analyze a total of 336 single-cell RNA-Seq libraries from seven cell lines. The results are highly robust regarding both average expression levels and the relative gene expression differences between individual cells. Gene expression diversity is characteristic depending on genes and pathways. Analyses of individual cells treated with the multi-tyrosine kinase inhibitor vandetanib reveal that, while the ribosomal genes and many other so-called house-keeping genes reduce their relative expression diversity during the drug treatment, the genes that are directly targeted by vandetanib, the EGFR and RET genes, remain constant. Rigid transcriptional control of these genes may not allow plastic changes of their expression with the drug treatment or during the cellular acquisition of drug resistance. Additionally, we find that the gene expression patterns of cancer-related genes are sometimes more diverse than expected based on the founder cells. Furthermore, we find that this diversity is occasionally latent in a normal state and initially becomes apparent after the drug treatment. Characteristic patterns in gene expression divergence, which would not be revealed by transcriptome analysis of bulk cells, may also play important roles when cells acquire drug resistance, perhaps by providing a cellular reservoir for gene expression programs.
    Genome biology 04/2015; 16(1):66. DOI:10.1186/s13059-015-0636-y
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    ABSTRACT: Many biological networks naturally form a hierarchy with a preponderance of downward information flow. In this study, we define a score to quantify the degree of hierarchy in a network and develop a simulated-annealing algorithm to maximize the hierarchical score globally over a network. We apply our algorithm to determine the hierarchical structure of the phosphorylome in detail and investigate the correlation between its hierarchy and kinase properties. We also compare it to the regulatory network, finding that the phosphorylome is more hierarchical than the regulome. Electronic supplementary material The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s13059-015-0624-2) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
    Genome biology 03/2015; 16(1):63. DOI:10.1186/s13059-015-0624-2
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    ABSTRACT: A fundamental concept in biology is that heritable material, DNA, is passed from parent to offspring, a process called vertical gene transfer. An alternative mechanism of gene acquisition is through horizontal gene transfer (HGT), which involves movement of genetic material between different species. HGT is well-known in single-celled organisms such as bacteria, but its existence in higher organisms, including animals, is less well established, and is controversial in humans. We have taken advantage of the recent availability of a sufficient number of high-quality genomes and associated transcriptomes to carry out a detailed examination of HGT in 26 animal species (10 primates, 12 flies and four nematodes) and a simplified analysis in a further 14 vertebrates. Genome-wide comparative and phylogenetic analyses show that HGT in animals typically gives rise to tens or hundreds of active 'foreign' genes, largely concerned with metabolism. Our analyses suggest that while fruit flies and nematodes have continued to acquire foreign genes throughout their evolution, humans and other primates have gained relatively few since their common ancestor. We also resolve the controversy surrounding previous evidence of HGT in humans and provide at least 33 new examples of horizontally acquired genes. We argue that HGT has occurred, and continues to occur, on a previously unsuspected scale in metazoans and is likely to have contributed to biochemical diversification during animal evolution.
    Genome biology 03/2015; 16(1):50. DOI:10.1186/s13059-015-0607-3
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    ABSTRACT: Cancer has long been understood as a somatic evolutionary process, but many details of tumor progression remain elusive. Here, we present BitPhylogeny, a probabilistic framework to reconstruct intra-tumor evolutionary pathways. Using a full Bayesian approach, we jointly estimate the number and composition of clones in the sample as well as the most likely tree connecting them. We validate our approach in the controlled setting of a simulation study and compare it against several competing methods. In two case studies, we demonstrate how BitPhylogeny reconstructs tumor phylogenies from methylation patterns in colon cancer and from single-cell exomes in myeloproliferative neoplasm. Electronic supplementary material The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s13059-015-0592-6) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
    Genome biology 02/2015; 16(1):36. DOI:10.1186/s13059-015-0592-6