Ferret assembly and gene annotation


The ferret (Mustela putorius furo) genome was produced by the Broad Institute. Illumina technology was used to produced this high quality draft. The whole genome shotgun data was assembled with Allpaths-LG. It is composed of 117441 contigs with an N50 value of 44.8kb and 7741 scaffolds with an N50 value of 9.3Mb.

The genome assembly represented here corresponds to GenBank Assembly ID GCA_000215625.1

Gene annotation

The gene set was built using a mixed approach. First the Ensembl pipeline was used to generate 264,684 models from orthologous vertebrate proteins from UniprotKB with a protein existence level of 1 or 2. Then, due to the lack of species specific sequences and the availability of RNA-Seq for ferret, we used 1.1G paired-end reads sequenced by the Broad Institute. The RNA-Seq data contains tissues from a male ferret, from a female ferret, from an influenza infected ferret and from different developmental stage. We pooled the tissues to avoid creating too many fragmented models. Using the RNA-Seq pipeline, we created 22,299 models from the pooled set. When a pooled model was missing but we had a consensus with the tissues models, the consensus model was added to the pooled set, which brought the number of RNA-Seq models up to 24,837. By combining the orthologous set, the RNA-Seq set and our ncRNA pipeline we built the final gene set: 19910 protein coding gene models, 270 pseudogenes, 17 retrotransposed and 3,614 non coding RNA.

RNASeq data set

In addition to the main set, we have predicted gene models for each tissue type using the RNA-Seq pipeline. We did a BLASTp of these models against UniProt proteins of protein existence level 1 and 2 in order to confirm the open reading frame (ORF). The best BLAST hit is displayed as a transcript supporting evidence.

The tissue-specific sets of transcript models built using our RNAseq pipeline are as follows:

TissueNumber of gene models
21 days post fertilization embryo:
Development mix13659
28 days post fertilization embryo:
Development mix14717
36 days post fertilization embryo:
Development mix14007
Adult ferret:
Lung and trachea13960
Influenza infected ferret:
Lung and trachea11911
Female ferret:
Skeletal muscle14423
Male ferret:
Lung and trachea19824

More information

General information about this species can be found in Wikipedia.



AssemblyMusPutFur1.0, INSDC Assembly GCA_000215625.1, Jun 2011
Database version79.1
Base Pairs2,277,906,570
Golden Path Length

The golden path is the length of the reference assembly. It consists of the sum of all top-level sequences in the seq_region table, omitting any redundant regions such as haplotypes and PARs (pseudoautosomal regions).

Genebuild byEnsembl
Genebuild methodMixed strategy build
Genebuild startedApr 2012
Genebuild releasedAug 2012
Genebuild last updated/patchedAug 2012

Gene counts

Coding genes

Genes and/or transcript that contains an open reading frame (ORF).

Non coding genes3,614
Small non coding genes

Small non coding genes are usually fewer than 200 bases long. They may be transcribed but are not translated. In Ensembl, genes with the following biotypes are classed as small non coding genes: miRNA, miscRNA, rRNA, scRNA, snlRNA, snoRNA, snRNA, and also the pseudogenic form of these biotypes. The majority of the small non coding genes in Ensembl are annotated automatically by our ncRNA pipeline. Please note that tRNAs are annotated separately using tRNAscan. tRNAs are included as 'simple fetaures', not genes, because they are not annotated using aligned sequence evidence.

Misc non coding genes432

A pseudogene shares an evolutionary history with a functional protein-coding gene but it has been mutated through evolution to contain frameshift and/or stop codon(s) that disrupt the open reading frame.

Gene transcriptsNucleotide sequence resulting from the transcription of the genomic DNA to mRNA. One gene can have different transcripts or splice variants resulting from the alternative splicing of different exons in genes.23,963


Genscan gene predictions48,640