CompGen Team Develops Faster Algorithms to Analyze Genomic Associations

The genome-wide association study (GWAS) has great potential to facilitate the identification of genomic loci underlying phenotypic variability and disease susceptibility. Although successful in elucidating the genomic sources of a wide range of agronomically important traits and human diseases, the statistical approaches employed in a typical GWAS assume a potentially over simplistic model of the relationship between genes and traits. (more…)

Genomic Data May Soon Outpace YouTube and Twitter Data, Say CompGen Researchers

The growing field of genomics may produce more data in 10 years than huge services like YouTube and Twitter, according to a team of scientists. In a paper published in the open-access journal PLOS Biology, CompGen Fellow Zachary Stephens of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and others argue that as the ability to map genomes gets easier and faster, the amount and variety of data produced will exceed the ability to handle it. (more…)

CompGen Researchers: Different Species Share A “Genetic Toolkit” for Behavioral Traits

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — The house mouse, stickleback fish and honey bee appear to have little in common, but at the genetic level these creatures respond in strikingly similar ways to danger, researchers report. When any of these animals confronts an intruder, the researchers found, many of the same genes and brain gene networks gear up or down in response.

This discovery, reported in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, suggests that distantly related organisms share some key genetic mechanisms that help them respond to threats, said University of Illinois cell and developmental biology professor Lisa Stubbs, who led the research with animal biology professor Alison Bell and entomology professor and Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology director Gene Robinson. Bell and Stubbs also are IGB faculty. (more…)