Sequencing two DNA templates in five channels by digital compression

Michael Nelson, Yanping Zhang, David L. Steffens, Reingard Grabherr, James L. Van Etten

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


By applying algebraic coding methods to the Sanger dideoxynucleotide procedure, DNA sequences of two templates can be determined simultaneously in only five reactions and data channels. A 5:2 data compression is accomplished by instantaneous source coding of nucleotide sequence pairs into one set of 5-bit block codes. A general algebraic expression, 2n - 1 ≥ 4f, describes conditions under which f DNA templates can be sequenced using n channels. Such compression sequencing is accurate and efficient, as demonstrated by manual 35S autoradiographic detection and automated on-line analysis using fluorescent-labeled primers. Symmetric 5:2 compression is especially useful when comparing two closely related sequences.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1647-1651
Number of pages5
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number5
StatePublished - Mar 1 1993


  • Algebraic coding
  • Information theory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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