Stacks: Building and genotyping loci de novo from short-read sequences

Julian M. Catchen, Angel Amores, Paul Hohenlohe, William Cresko, John H. Postlethwait

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Advances in sequencing technology provide special opportunities for genotyping individuals with speed and thrift, but the lack of software to automate the calling of tens of thousands of genotypes over hundreds of individuals has hindered progress. Stacks is a software system that uses short-read sequence data to identify and genotype loci in a set of individuals either de novo or by comparison to a reference genome. From reduced representation Illumina sequence data, such as RAD-tags, Stacks can recover thousands of single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers useful for the genetic analysis of crosses or populations. Stacks can generate markers for ultra-dense genetic linkage maps, facilitate the examination of population phylogeography, and help in reference genome assembly. We report here the algorithms implemented in Stacks and demonstrate their efficacy by constructing loci from simulated RADtags taken from the stickleback reference genome and by recapitulating and improving a genetic map of the zebrafish, Danio rerio.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)171-182
Number of pages12
JournalG3: Genes, Genomes, Genetics
Issue number3
StatePublished - Aug 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Illumina
  • Map
  • Meiotic linkage
  • RAD-seq
  • RAD-tag
  • Zebrafish

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Genetics(clinical)


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