Molecular Biology: Open Access

ISSN: 2168-9547

Open Access

References for Haplotype Imputation in the Big Data Era


Wenzhi Li, Wei Xu, Qiling Li, Li Ma and Qing Song

Imputation is a powerful in silico approach to fill in those missing values in the big datasets. This process requires a reference panel, which is a collection of big data from which the missing information can be extracted and imputed. Haplotype imputation requires ethnicity-matched references; a mismatched reference panel will significantly reduce the quality of imputation. However, currently existing big datasets cover only a small number of ethnicities, there is a lack of ethnicity-matched references for many ethnic populations in the world, which has hampered the data imputation of haplotypes and its downstream applications. To solve this issue, several approaches have been proposed and explored, including the mixed reference panel, the internal reference panel and genotype-converted reference panel. This review article provides the information and comparison between these approaches. Increasing evidence showed that not just one or two genetic elements dictate the gene activity and functions; instead, cisinteractions of multiple elements dictate gene activity. Cis-interactions require the interacting elements to be on the same chromosome molecule, therefore, haplotype analysis is essential for the investigation of cis-interactions among multiple genetic variants at different loci, and appears to be especially important for studying the common diseases. It will be valuable in a wide spectrum of applications from academic research, to clinical diagnosis, prevention, treatment, and pharmaceutical industry.


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