Article

Estimating population diversity with CatchAll

Department of Statistical Science, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY, 14853, USA.
Bioinformatics (Impact Factor: 4.62). 02/2012; DOI: 10.1093/bioinformatics/bts075
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Motivation: The massive data produced by next-generation sequencing require advanced statistical tools. We address estimating the total diversity or species richness in a population. To date, only relatively simple methods have been implemented in available software. There is a need for software employing modern, computationally intensive statistical analyses including error, goodness-of-fit and robustness assessments. Results: We present CatchAll, a fast, easy-to-use, platform-independent program that computes maximum likelihood estimates for finite-mixture models, weighted linear regression-based analyses and coverage-based non-parametric methods, along with outlier diagnostics. Given sample 'frequency count' data, CatchAll computes 12 different diversity estimates and applies a model-selection algorithm. CatchAll also derives discounted diversity estimates to adjust for possibly uncertain low-frequency counts. It is accompanied by an Excel-based graphics program.

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