• Wellcome Connecting Science

Bacterial Genomes III: Comparative Genomics using Artemis Comparison Tool (ACT)

Learn to use comparative genomics to improve your knowledge of microbial genomes.

10,522 enrolled on this course

Learners working at computers
  • Duration

    3 weeks
  • Weekly study

    5 hours
  • Digital upgrade

  • Accreditation

    AvailableMore info

Gain experience in using the Artemis Comparison Tool for comparative genomics

Disease outbreaks are still a big problem in our modern world. Comparison between two or more bacterial genomes can help improve understanding of the causes of pathogenicity and outbreaks of disease caused by bacteria.

On this course you will learn how to use the free Artemis Comparison Tool (ACT). Developed at the Wellcome Sanger Institute, ACT will help you to visualise the comparison of genomes and analyse the results.

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Skip to 0 minutes and 9 seconds Welcome to this course in bacterial comparative genomics. My name is Dr. Ulrike Boehme. And I’m Dr. Christine Boinett. Comparative genomics is used to compare genomic features between different or similar organisms. In this course, we’ll be using a freely available software, known as the Artemis Comparison Tool, to compare bacterial genomes. There will be plenty of articles, screencasts and interviews to guide you through the process. You’ll also have the opportunity to join in constructive discussions with other learners and share your findings. These discussions will be especially useful in week three, where you’ll need to tackle a real research problem. Join us in this new adventure, where we delve further into bacterial genomes.

What topics will you cover?

Week 1
* Introduction to comparative genomics
* Introduction to ACT
Week 2
* Analyse available data
* Generate your own comparison files
* Make your own comparisons in ACT
Week 3
* Identify pseudogenes in Mycobacterium leprae using ACT
* Peer review project: Comparative genomics on two clinically relevant plasmids from Shigella

Who is this accredited by?

Royal College of Pathologists
Royal College of Pathologists:

This course has been accredited by the Royal College of Pathologists for 15 CPD credits. Credits can be claimed at a rate of 1 credit per hour of engagement with this course.

When would you like to start?

  • Date to be announced

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Learning on this course

On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Explain the advantages of comparative genomics
  • Explore basic tools of the Artemis Comparison Tool (ACT)
  • Interpret results from already generated comparison files
  • Produce new comparisons and analyse results
  • Develop hypothesis based on results observation

Who is the course for?

This course would benefit those interested in learning how to use tools to investigate and research bacterial genomes, and acquire bioinformatics skills to evaluate the role of microbial genes in disease. Learners will gain experience in comparative genomics, using the Artemis Comparison Tool to probe, visualise and compare genomes, and analyse the results.

This course will be of interest to anyone interested in microbiology, including undergraduates, post-graduates, biomedical researchers, microbiologists, bioinformaticians, teachers, and healthcare professionals.

The opportunity to gain experience in using the Artemis Comparison Tool, a computational tool designed for comparative genomics, will also be of interest to all those who have studied our recommended pre-requisite courses: those with an interest in genomics and disease outbreaks, teachers and their 16-18-year-old science and computing students.

Ideally, you will have completed Bacterial Genomes: From DNA to Protein Function Using Bioinformatics and Bacterial Genomes: Accessing and Analysing Microbial Genome Data before joining the course.

What software or tools do you need?

This course will give you an opportunity to learn about and use Artemis Comparison Tool (ACT), a free tool used to display pairwise comparisons between two DNA sequences. To run this software effectively, you will require a computer (Windows, Mac or Linux) with 2GB RAM. The current version of ACT requires version 11 of Java to run successfully. Java 11 can be downloaded from this link. Older versions of ACT require Java 8 to run successfully. Java 8 can be downloaded from this link.

What do people say about this course?

This is an excellent course - pretty easy to follow & apply the tools

"This is an excellent course - pretty easy to follow and apply the tools."

In Week 3, the Peer Review ...applies concepts learnt on ACT comparati

"In Week 3, the Peer Review ...applies concepts learnt on ACT comparative genomics in real life clinical cases - this is a highlight of the course."

Who will you learn with?

I am a researcher in parasitology and computational biology at the University of Cambridge. I am passionate about bioinformatics and how we can use these tools to answer questions in biology.

I am a researcher in parasitology at the Wellcome Sanger Institute where I work as biocurator for Plasmodium genomes.

I am a researcher in bacterial genetics and my interest is in understanding the development of resistance in bacterial pathogens using next generation sequencing techniques.

I am the IT Manager for the Wellcome Genome Campus Advanced Courses and Scientific Conferences team. My interests lie in bioinformatics and its application to microbial genomics.

I am a graduate student at the Wellcome Sanger Institute, where I research the virulence and the molecular genetics of bacterial pathogens.

I am a Group Leader at the Wellcome Sanger Institute. I provide scientific oversight for this course. I am interested in bacterial evolution and the spread of infectious disease.

Who developed the course?

Wellcome Connecting Science

Wellcome Connecting Science develops and delivers open postgraduates courses and conferences focused on biomedicine.

Endorsers and supporters

supported by

Wellcome Sanger Institute

What's included?

Wellcome Connecting Science are offering everyone who joins this course a free digital upgrade, so that you can experience the full benefits of studying online for free. This means that you get:

  • Unlimited access to this course
  • Includes any articles, videos, peer reviews and quizzes
  • Tests to validate your learning
  • A PDF Certificate of Achievement to prove your success when you’re eligible
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