PCAP: A Whole-Genome Assembly Program

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Wang, Jianmin
Aluru, Srinivas
Yang, Shiaw-Pyng
Hillier, LaDeana
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Huang, Xiaoqiu
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Computer Science

Computer Science—the theory, representation, processing, communication and use of information—is fundamentally transforming every aspect of human endeavor. The Department of Computer Science at Iowa State University advances computational and information sciences through; 1. educational and research programs within and beyond the university; 2. active engagement to help define national and international research, and 3. educational agendas, and sustained commitment to graduating leaders for academia, industry and government.

The Computer Science Department was officially established in 1969, with Robert Stewart serving as the founding Department Chair. Faculty were composed of joint appointments with Mathematics, Statistics, and Electrical Engineering. In 1969, the building which now houses the Computer Science department, then simply called the Computer Science building, was completed. Later it was named Atanasoff Hall. Throughout the 1980s to present, the department expanded and developed its teaching and research agendas to cover many areas of computing.

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Electrical and Computer Engineering

The Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECpE) contains two focuses. The focus on Electrical Engineering teaches students in the fields of control systems, electromagnetics and non-destructive evaluation, microelectronics, electric power & energy systems, and the like. The Computer Engineering focus teaches in the fields of software systems, embedded systems, networking, information security, computer architecture, etc.

The Department of Electrical Engineering was formed in 1909 from the division of the Department of Physics and Electrical Engineering. In 1985 its name changed to Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Engineering. In 1995 it became the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering.

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  • Department of Electrical Engineering (1909-1985)
  • Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Engineering (1985-1995)

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We describe a whole-genome assembly program named PCAP for processing tens of millions of reads. The PCAP program has several features to address efficiency and accuracy issues in assembly. Multiple processors are used to perform most time-consuming computations in assembly. A more sensitive method is used to avoid missing overlaps caused by sequencing errors. Repetitive regions of reads are detected on the basis of many overlaps with other reads, instead of many shorter word matches with other reads. Contaminated end regions of reads are identified and removed. Generation of a consensus sequence for a contig is based on an alignment of reads in the contig, in which both base quality values and coverage information are used to determine every consensus base. The PCAP program was tested on a mouse whole-genome data set of 30 million reads and a human Chromosome 20 data set of 1.7 million reads. The program is freely available for academic use.


This article is published as Huang, Xiaoqiu, Jianmin Wang, Srinivas Aluru, Shiaw-Pyng Yang, and LaDeana Hillier. "PCAP: a whole-genome assembly program." Genome research 13, no. 9 (2003): 2164-2170. doi: 10.1101/gr.1390403. Posted with permission.

Wed Jan 01 00:00:00 UTC 2003