How You'll Get Your Results Back

Your results come in two formats: the sequence file and the chromatogram.

  • The Sequence File:

    This is simply a text listing of the sequence obtained from your DNA. It is what's
    known as a "flat text file", aka an ASCII file.

    You'll automatically receive the sequence file by email when we have completed the
    analysis. You can read this file using any standard word processor, or you can import
    the sequence into most DNA sequence analysis software packages. The file is a flat
    text ('ASCII') file.

    PLEASE NOTE that a text file does not necessarily contain accurate sequence! If your
    sample is weak or blank, any or all of the bases reported could be completely wrong.
    There are many artifacts that can similarly compromise the accuracy of the basecalls.
    You MUST examine your chromatogram in order to assess the validity of your results!

  • The Chromatogram:

    Each sequence generates a four-color chromatogram showing the partially-processed
    data from which the machine determined the nucleotide sequence. You should download
    your chromatogram from our Data Server. From the Core's Home Page, click on
    Download Results. You will need your PI's login name and the lab password.

    Make sure you read the directions provided there. Note especially that these files
    are kept on the server for only about 1-2 weeks after sequencing is done! (The exact
    time for which files are kept depends on how much space we have on that server.)

    PLEASE NOTE: As of 01-Feb-05, we no longer provide hard-copy printouts of
    chromatograms. Click here for more information.

We again must emphasize that the sequence file is virtually *useless* unless you also examine
the chromatogram file. You need to know which base calls are reliable, which are not, and why
they are not. Without the chromatogram, you simply cannot trust the raw, textual sequence data.

Please note, however, that your own experimental needs dictate whether the sequencing results
you receive are adequate. We cannot edit your sequence, since to do so would require knowlege
of your needs.

Please read Interpretation of Sequencing Chromatograms for further explanation.