BACKGROUND: Systems biology modeling from microarray data requires the most contemporary structural and functional array annotation. However, microarray annotations, especially for non-commercial, non-traditional biomedical model organisms, are often dated. In addition, most microarray analysis tools do not readily accept EST clone names, which are abundantly represented on arrays. Manual re-annotation of microarrays is impracticable and so we developed a computational re-annotation tool (ArrayIDer) to retrieve the most recent accession mapping files from public databases based on EST clone names or accessions and rapidly generate database accessions for entire microarrays. RESULTS: We utilized the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Centre 13K chicken cDNA array - a widely-used non-commercial chicken microarray - to demonstrate the principle that ArrayIDer could markedly improve annotation. We structurally re-annotated 55% of the entire array. Moreover, we decreased non-chicken functional annotations by 2 fold. One beneficial consequence of our re-annotation was to identify 290 pseudogenes, of which 66 were previously incorrectly annotated. CONCLUSION: ArrayIDer allows rapid automated structural re-annotation of entire arrays and provides multiple accession types for use in subsequent functional analysis. This information is especially valuable for systems biology modeling in the non-traditional biomedical model organisms.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Structural Biology
- Molecular Biology
- Computer Science Applications
- Applied Mathematics