mRatBN7.2: familiar and unfamiliar features of a new rat genome reference assembly

Tristan V. de Jong, Hao Chen, Wesley A. Brashear, Kelli J. Kochan, Andrew E. Hillhouse, Yaming Zhu, Isha S. Dhande, Elizabeth A. Hudson, Mary H. Sumlut, Melissa L. Smith, Theodore S. Kalbfleisch, Peter A. Doris

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Rat genomic tools have been slower to emerge than for those of humans and mice and have remained less thorough and comprehensive. The arrival of a new and improved rat reference genome, mRatBN7.2, in late 2020 is a welcome event. This assembly, like predecessor rat reference assemblies, is derived from an inbred Brown Norway rat. In this “user” survey we hope to provide other users of this assembly some insight into its characteristics and some assessment of its improvements as well as a few caveats that arise from the unique aspects of this assembly. mRatBN7.2 was generated by the Wellcome Sanger Institute as part of the large Vertebrate Genomes Project. This rat assembly has now joined human, mouse, chicken, and zebrafish in the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI)’s Genome Reference Consortium, which provides ongoing curation of the assembly. Here we examine the technical procedures by which the assembly was created and assess how this assembly constitutes an improvement over its predecessor. We also indicate the technical limitations affecting the assembly, providing illustrations of how these limitations arise and the impact that results for this reference assembly.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)251-260
Number of pages10
JournalPhysiological Genomics
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2022

Bibliographical note

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Genetics


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