Rachel Sherman


I am working in the Schatz Lab during the summer of 2014 as part of Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory's Undergraduate Research Program. I am working on de novo genome assembly and whole genome alignment. Currently, when assembling genomes from short Illumina reads, a reference genome is used if one is available. However, aligning to a reference can only detect minor changes such as SNPs or small indels. To detect larger structural variation between genomes, such as translocations, inversions, or large insertions or deletions, de novo assembly must be used.

I will be streamlining the process of de novo assembly and whole genome alignment previously performed by the Schatz Lab on rice genomes. This will involve using the Allpaths-LG assembler and the alignment program MUMmer, and doing some additional analysis on the genomes, including looking at k-mer coverage across the genome. After streamlining the process, it will be applied to other genomes in hopes of finding novel variations, including yeast genomes, Solanaceae genomes, and human genomes of siblings/parents with and without autism, schizophrenia, and cancer.

Other Information

I am currently a student at Harvey Mudd College in Claremont, CA. I am majoring in Mathematical and Computational Biology, and will graduate in May 2015.

Rachel Sherman
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory
One Bungtown Road
Koch Building
Cold Spring Harbor, NY 11724

E-mail: rsherman@cshl.edu