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Importing and querying HGNC data

Project description

PyHGNC is a Python package to access and query data provided by HGNC-approved gene nomenclature, gene families and associated resources including links to genomic, proteomic and phenotypic information.

Data are installed in a (local or remote) RDBMS enabling bioinformatic algorithms very fast response times to sophisticated queries and high flexibility by using SOLAlchemy database layer.

PyHGNC is developed by the Department of Bioinformatics at the Fraunhofer Institute for Algorithms and Scientific Computing SCAI For more in for information about PyHGNC go to the documentation.

Entity relationship model

This development is supported by following IMI projects:

IMI project logo AETIONOMY project logo PHAGO project logo SCAI project logo

Supported databases

PyHGNC uses SQLAlchemy to cover a wide spectrum of RDMSs (Relational database management system). For best performance MySQL or MariaDB is recommended. But if you have no possibility to install software on your system SQLite - which needs no further installation - also works. Following RDMSs are supported (by SQLAlchemy):

  1. Firebird

  2. Microsoft SQL Server

  3. MySQL / MariaDB

  4. Oracle

  5. PostgreSQL

  6. SQLite

  7. Sybase

Getting Started

This is a quick start tutorial for impatient.


Current version on PyPI Stable Supported Python Versions

PyHGNC can be installed with pip.

pip install pyhgnc

If you fail because you have no rights to install use superuser (sudo on Linux before the commend) or …

pip install --user pyhgnc

If you want to make sure you are installing this under python3 use …

python3 -m pip install pyhgnc


If you don’t know what all that means skip the section MySQL/MariaDB setup.

Don’t worry! You can always later change the configuration. For more information about changing database system later go to the subtitle Changing database configuration Changing database configuration in the documentation on readthedocs.

MySQL/MariaDB setup

Log in MySQL as root user and create a new database, create a user, assign the rights and flush privileges.

CREATE DATABASE pyhgnc CHARACTER SET utf8 COLLATE utf8_general_ci;
GRANT ALL PRIVILEGES ON pyhgnc.* TO 'pyhgnc_user'@'%' IDENTIFIED BY 'pyhgnc_passwd';

There are two options to set the MySQL/MariaDB.

  1. The simplest is to start the command line tool

pyhgnc mysql

You will be guided with input prompts. Accept the default value in squared brackets with RETURN. You will see something like this

server name/ IP address database is hosted [localhost]:
MySQL/MariaDB user [pyhgnc_user]:
MySQL/MariaDB password [pyhgnc_passwd]:
database name [pyhgnc]:
character set [utf8]:

Connection will be tested and in case of success return Connection was successful. Otherwise you will see following hint

Test was NOT successful

Please use one of the following connection schemas
MySQL/MariaDB (strongly recommended):


MsSQL (pyodbc needed):

SQLite (always works):

- Linux:

- Windows:


2. The second option is to start a python shell and set the MySQL configuration. If you have not changed anything in the SQL statements above …

import pyhgnc

If you have used you own settings, please adapt the following command to you requirements.

import pyhgnc
pyhgnc.set_mysql_connection(host='localhost', user='pyhgnc_user', passwd='pyhgnc_passwd', db='pyhgnc')


The updating process will download the complete HGNC json file and the HCOP file.

import pyhgnc

This will use either the default connection settings of PyHGNC or the settings defined by the user. It is also possible to run the update process from shell.

pyhgnc update

Quick start with query functions

Initialize the query object

query = pyhgnc.query()

Get all HGNC entries:

all_entries = query.hgnc()

More information

See the installation documentation for more advanced instructions. Also, check the change log at CHANGELOG.rst.

HGNC tools

HGNC provides also online tools .

Project details

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