Research Publications


Combining calls from multiple somatic mutation-callers

Kim, SY; Jacob, L; Speed, TP
BMC Bioinformatics
Journal Article
BACKGROUND: Accurate somatic mutation-calling is essential for insightful mutation analyses in cancer studies. Several mutation-callers are publicly available and more are likely to appear. Nonetheless, mutation-calling is still challenging and there is unlikely to be one established caller that systematically outperforms all others. Therefore, fully utilizing multiple callers can be a powerful way to construct a list of final calls for one's research. RESULTS: Using a set of mutations from multiple callers that are impartially validated, we present a statistical approach for building a combined caller, which can be applied to combine calls in a wider dataset generated using a similar protocol. Using the mutation outputs and the validation data from The Cancer Genome Atlas endometrial study (6,746 sites), we demonstrate how to build a statistical model that predicts the probability of each call being a somatic mutation, based on the detection status of multiple callers and a few associated features. CONCLUSION: The approach allows us to build a combined caller across the full range of stringency levels, which outperforms all of the individual callers.
BioMed Central
© 2014 Kim et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly credited. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

Creation Date 2014-07-10 09:26:33