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Genome projects now produce draft assemblies within weeks owing to advanced high-throughput sequencing technologies. For milestone projects such as Escherichia coli or Homo sapiens, teams of scientists were employed to manually curate and finish these genomes to a high standard. Nowadays, this is not feasible for most projects, and the quality of genomes is generally of a much lower standard. This protocol describes software (PAGIT) that is used to improve the quality of draft genomes. It offers flexible functionality to close gaps in scaffolds, correct base errors in the consensus sequence and exploit reference genomes (if available) in order to improve scaffolding and generating annotations. The protocol is most accessible for bacterial and small eukaryotic genomes (up to 300 Mb), such as pathogenic bacteria, malaria and parasitic worms. Applying PAGIT to an E. coli assembly takes ∼24 h: it doubles the average contig size and annotates over 4,300 gene models.

Original publication




Journal article


Nat Protoc

Publication Date





1260 - 1284


Algorithms, Computational Biology, Contig Mapping, Escherichia coli, Genome, Genomics, Molecular Sequence Annotation, Sequence Analysis, DNA, Software