The Gene Ontology Consortium (GOC) provides the most comprehensive resource currently available for computable knowledge regarding the functions of genes and gene products. Here, we report the advances of the consortium over the past two years. The new GO-CAM annotation framework was notably improved, and we formalized the model with a computational schema to check and validate the rapidly increasing repository of 2838 GO-CAMs. In addition, we describe the impacts of several collaborations to refine GO and report a 10% increase in the number of GO annotations, a 25% increase in annotated gene products, and over 9,400 new scientific articles annotated. As the project matures, we continue our efforts to review older annotations in light of newer findings, and, to maintain consistency with other ontologies. As a result, 20 000 annotations derived from experimental data were reviewed, corresponding to 2.5% of experimental GO annotations. The website (http://geneontology.org) was redesigned for quick access to documentation, downloads and tools. To maintain an accurate resource and support traceability and reproducibility, we have made available a historical archive covering the past 15 years of GO data with a consistent format and file structure for both the ontology and annotations.
In biology and biomedicine, relating phenotypic outcomes with genetic variation and environmental factors remains a challenge: patient phenotypes may not match known diseases, candidate variants may be in genes that haven’t been characterized, research organisms may not recapitulate human or veterinary diseases, environmental factors affecting disease outcomes are unknown or undocumented, and many resources must be queried to find potentially significant phenotypic associations. The Monarch Initiative (https://monarchinitiative.org) integrates information on genes, variants, genotypes, phenotypes and diseases in a variety of species, and allows powerful ontology-based search. We develop many widely adopted ontologies that together enable sophisticated computational analysis, mechanistic discovery and diagnostics of Mendelian diseases. Our algorithms and tools are widely used to identify animal models of human disease through phenotypic similarity, for differential diagnostics and to facilitate translational research. Launched in 2015, Monarch has grown with regards to data (new organisms, more sources, better modeling); new API and standards; ontologies (new Mondo unified disease ontology, improvements to ontologies such as HPO and uPheno); user interface (a redesigned website); and community development. Monarch data, algorithms and tools are being used and extended by resources such as GA4GH and NCATS Translator, among others, to aid mechanistic discovery and diagnostics.
Genome annotation is the process of identifying the location and function of a genome's encoded features. Improving the biological accuracy of annotation is a complex and iterative process requiring researchers to review and incorporate multiple sources of information such as transcriptome alignments, predictive models based on sequence profiles, and comparisons to features found in related organisms. Because rapidly decreasing costs are enabling an ever-growing number of scientists to incorporate sequencing as a routine laboratory technique, there is widespread demand for tools that can assist in the deliberative analytical review of genomic information. To this end, we present Apollo, an open source software package that enables researchers to efficiently inspect and refine the precise structure and role of genomic features in a graphical browser-based platform. Some of Apollo’s newer user interface features include support for real-time collaboration, allowing distributed users to simultaneously edit the same encoded features while also instantly seeing the updates made by other researchers on the same region in a manner similar to Google Docs. Its technical architecture enables Apollo to be integrated into multiple existing genomic analysis pipelines and heterogeneous laboratory workflow platforms. Finally, we consider the implications that Apollo and related applications may have on how the results of genome research are published and made accessible.
A lack of robust knowledge of the number of rare diseases and the number of people affected by them limits the development of approaches to ameliorate the substantial cumulative burden of rare diseases. Here, we call for coordinated efforts to more precisely define rare diseases.
We report an update of the Hymenoptera Genome Database (HGD) (http://HymenopteraGenome.org), a model organism database for insect species of the order Hymenoptera (ants, bees and wasps). HGD maintains genomic data for 9 bee species, 10 ant species and 1 wasp, including the versions of genome and annotation data sets published by the genome sequencing consortiums and those provided by NCBI. A new data-mining warehouse, HymenopteraMine, based on the InterMine data warehousing system, integrates the genome data with data from external sources and facilitates cross-species analyses based on orthology. New genome browsers and annotation tools based on JBrowse/WebApollo provide easy genome navigation, and viewing of high throughput sequence data sets and can be used for collaborative genome annotation. All of the genomes and annotation data sets are combined into a single BLAST server that allows users to select and combine sequence data sets to search.
We report an update of the Bovine Genome Database (BGD) (http://BovineGenome.org). The goal of BGD is to support bovine genomics research by providing genome annotation and data mining tools. We have developed new genome and annotation browsers using JBrowse and WebApollo for two Bos taurus genome assemblies, the reference genome assembly (UMD3.1.1) and the alternate genome assembly (Btau_4.6.1). Annotation tools have been customized to highlight priority genes for annotation, and to aid annotators in selecting gene evidence tracks from 91 tissue specific RNAseq datasets. We have also developed BovineMine, based on the InterMine data warehousing system, to integrate the bovine genome, annotation, QTL, SNP and expression data with external sources of orthology, gene ontology, gene interaction and pathway information. BovineMine provides powerful query building tools, as well as customized query templates, and allows users to analyze and download genome-wide datasets. With BovineMine, bovine researchers can use orthology to leverage the curated gene pathways of model organisms, such as human, mouse and rat. BovineMine will be especially useful for gene ontology and pathway analyses in conjunction with GWAS and QTL studies.
The future of agricultural research depends on data. The sheer volume of agricultural biological data being produced today makes excellent data management essential. Governmental agencies, publishers and science funders require data management plans for publicly funded research. Furthermore, the value of data increases exponentially when they are properly stored, described, integrated and shared, so that they can be easily utilized in future analyses. AgBioData (https://www.agbiodata.org) is a consortium of people working at agricultural biological databases, data archives and knowledgbases who strive to identify common issues in database development, curation and management, with the goal of creating database products that are more Findable, Accessible, Interoperable and Reusable. We strive to promote authentic, detailed, accurate and explicit communication between all parties involved in scientific data. As a step toward this goal, we present the current state of biocuration, ontologies, metadata and persistence, database platforms, programmatic (machine) access to data, communication and sustainability with regard to data curation. Each section describes challenges and opportunities for these topics, along with recommendations and best practices.
Highlights d KG-COVID-19 is a framework for producing customized COVID-19 knowledge graphs d Our knowledge graph and framework is free, open-source, and FAIR d KG-COVID-19 integrates a wide range of COVID-19-related data in an ontology-aware way d Our KG has been applied to use cases including ML tasks, hypothesis-based querying
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