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Bioinformatics. 2009 Jun 1;25(11):1424-5. doi: 10.1093/bioinformatics/btp178. Epub 2009 Apr 7.

ProbeMatch: rapid alignment of oligonucleotides to genome allowing both gaps and mismatches.

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  • 1Department of EECS, The University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA.



We have developed a tool, called ProbeMatch, for matching a large set of oligonucleotide sequences against a genome database using gapped alignments. Unlike most of the existing tools such as ELAND which only perform ungapped alignments allowing at most two mismatches, ProbeMatch generates both ungapped and gapped alignments allowing up to three errors including insertion, deletion and mismatch. To speedup sequence alignment, ProbeMatch uses gapped q-grams and q-grams of various patterns to identify target hits to a query sequence. This approach results in fewer initial sequences to examine with no loss in sensitivity. ProbeMatch has been used to align 169,095 Illumina GAII reads against the human genome, which could not be mapped by ELAND, and found alignments for 28,625 reads of the 169,095 reads in less than 3 h.


Source code is freely available at (

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