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A library for finding the nearest gene to a genomic location

Project description

Gene Locator

This library allows the user to annotate a list of genetic variants given chromosome/position as coordinates.


This library can be used via command line script, or called from within Python. Currently only Python versions >=3.5 are supported.

$ pip3 install genelocator
$ gene-locator GRCh37 chr19 234523 --coding-only --version gencode32
# => 19	281040	291403	ENSG00000141934.10_5	PLPP2
from genelocator import get_genelocator
# By default, it will only perform the lookup if cached data is available.
#  A new lookup can be automatically generated for a different build/ gene list, by specifying auto_fetch=True
gl = get_genelocator('GRCh38', gencode_version=31, coding_only=True, auto_fetch=True)
gene ='chr19', 101000)
# => [{'chrom': '19', 'start': 107104, 'end': 117102, 'ensg': 'ENSG00000176695.8', 'symbol': 'OR4F17'}]

The python package comes bundled with data from GENCODE version 32, for builds GRCh37 and GRCh38.


It works as follows:

  1. If a SNP falls within at least one gene, return a list of gene information for each gene 1a. If a SNP falls within multiple genes, return a list of information about all overlapping genes.
  2. If a SNP does not fall within any genes, return information for the gene whose start or end is closest to the specified coordinates.
  3. If the requested chromosome has no data, throw an error.


To install dependencies and run in development mode:

pip install -e .

Linting rules: flake8

Unit tests: pytest tests/

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