Comparing genomes with rearrangements and segmental duplications
Motivation: Large-scale evolutionary events such as genomic rearrange. ments and segmental duplications form an important part of the evolution of genomes and are widely studied from both biological and computational perspectives. A basic computational problem is to infer these events in the evolutionary history for given modern genomes, a task for which many algorithms have been proposed under various constraints. Algorithms that can handle both rearrangements and content-modifying events such as duplications and losses remain few and limited in their applicability. Results: We study the comparison of two genomes under a model including general rearrangements (through double-cut-and-join) and segmental duplications. We formulate the comparison as an optimization problem and describe an exact algorithm to solve it by using an integer linear program. We also devise a sufficient condition and an efficient algorithm to identify optimal substructures, which can simplify the problem while preserving optimality. Using the optimal substructures with the integer linear program (ILP) formulation yields a practical and exact algorithm to solve the problem. We then apply our algorithm to assign in-paralogs and orthologs (a necessary step in handling duplications) and compare its performance with that of the state-of-the-art method MSOAR, using both simulations and real data. On simulated datasets, our method outperforms MSOAR by a significant margin, and on five well-annotated species, MSOAR achieves high accuracy, yet our method performs slightly better on each of the 10 pairwise comparisons.