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Hum Hered. 2009;67(4):248-66. doi: 10.1159/000194978. Epub 2009 Jan 27.

Haplotyping methods for pedigrees.

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Department of Biostatistics, Section on Statistical Genetics, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, Ala., USA.


Haplotypes provide valuable information in the study of diseases, complex traits, population histories, and evolutionary genetics. With the dramatic increase in the number of available single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers, haplotype inference (haplotyping) using observed genotype data has become an important component of genetic studies in general and of statistical gene mapping in particular. Existing haplotyping methods include (1) population-based methods, (2) methods for pooled DNA samples, and (3) methods for family and pedigree data. The methods and computer programs for population data and pooled DNA samples were reviewed recently in the literature. As several authors noted, family and pedigree datasets are abundant and have unique advantages. In the past twenty years, many haplotyping methods for family and pedigree data have been developed. Therefore, in this contribution we review haplotyping methods and the corresponding computer programs suitable for family and pedigree data and discuss their applications and limitations. We explore the connections among these methods, and describe the challenges that remain to be addressed.

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