• Anirban Dutta

      Articles written in Journal of Biosciences

    • BIND – An algorithm for loss-less compression of nucleotide sequence data

      Tungadri Bose Monzoorul Haque Mohammed Anirban Dutta Sharmila S Mande

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      Recent advances in DNA sequencing technologies have enabled the current generation of life science researchers to probe deeper into the genomic blueprint. The amount of data generated by these technologies has been increasing exponentially since the last decade. Storage, archival and dissemination of such huge data sets require efficient solutions, both from the hardware as well as software perspective. The present paper describes BIND – an algorithm specialized for compressing nucleotide sequence data. By adopting a unique ‘block-length’ encoding for representing binary data (as a key step), BIND achieves significant compression gains as compared to the widely used general purpose compression algorithms (gzip, bzip2 and lzma). Moreover, in contrast to implementations of existing specialized genomic compression approaches, the implementation of BIND is enabled to handle non-ATGC and lowercase characters. This makes BIND a loss-less compression approach that is suitable for practical use. More importantly, validation results of BIND (with real-world data sets) indicate reasonable speeds of compression and decompression that can be achieved with minimal processor/memory usage. BIND is available for download at http://metagenomics.atc.tcs.com/compression/BIND. No license is required for academic or non-profit use.

    • FASTR: A novel data format for concomitant representation of RNA sequence and secondary structure information

      Tungadri Bose Anirban Dutta Mohammed Mh Hemang Gandhi Sharmila S Mande

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      Given the importance of RNA secondary structures in defining their biological role, it would be convenient for researchers seeking RNA data if both sequence and structural information pertaining to RNA molecules are made available together. Current nucleotide data repositories archive only RNA sequence data. Furthermore, storage formats which can frugally represent RNA sequence as well as structure data in a single file, are currently unavailable. This article proposes a novel storage format, `FASTR’, for concomitant representation of RNA sequence and structure. The storage efficiency of the proposed FASTR format has been evaluated using RNA data from various microorganisms. Results indicate that the size of FASTR formatted files (containing both RNA sequence as well as structure information) are equivalent to that of FASTA-format files, which contain only RNA sequence information. RNA secondary structure is typically represented using a combination of a string of nucleotide characters along with the corresponding dot-bracket notation indicating structural attributes. `FASTR’ – the novel storage format proposed in the present study enables a frugal representation of both RNA sequence and structural information in the form of a single string. In spite of having a relatively smaller storage footprint, the resultant `fastr’ string(s) retain all sequence as well as secondary structural information that could be stored using a dot-bracket notation. An implementation of the `FASTR’ methodology is available for download at http://metagenomics.atc.tcs.com/compression/fastr.

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