phastCons: Conservation scoring and identification of conserved elements
phastOdds: Log-odds scoring for phylogenetic models or phylo-HMMs
phyloFit: Fitting of phylogenetic models to aligned DNA sequences
phyloP: Computation of p-values for conservation or acceleration, either lineage-specific or across all branches
exoniphy: Phylogenetic exon prediction
dless: Prediction of elements under lineage-specific selection
prequel: Probabilistic reconstruction of ancestral sequences
phastBias:Identification of GC-biased gene conversion using a phylo-HMM
Alignments: maf_parse, msa_view, msa_split, msa_diff
Phylogenetic models: tree_doctor, all_dists, draw_tree, consEntropy, indelFit, indelHistory
Sampling/bootstrapping: base_evolve, phyloBoot
Annotations: refeature, clean_genes, eval_predictions
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The core libraries for PHAST and several initial programs (including phyloFit, exoniphy, and phastCons) were developed between 2002 and 2004 as part of Adam Siepel's dissertation work in David Haussler's group at UC Santa Cruz. Since that time, several new programs have been added, various improvements to the libraries have been made, and the user base has gradually expanded from a small group of close collaborators to several hundred people with diverse research interests. As of 2006, the project has moved to the Siepel Lab at Cornell, with development and maintenance continuing in collaboration with Katie Pollard's lab at UC San Francisco. Since 2008, Melissa Hubisz has been the lead programmer working on PHAST and RPHAST. The PHAST/RPHAST project now has dedicated funding from the National Science Foundation and National Institutes of Health (see Funding).
A number of collaborators have helped to improve PHAST during the course of its development. In particular, Elliott Margulies (NHGRI) was a devoted and patient user early in the project, and his constructive feedback led to a number of new features, bug fixes, and other improvements. Valuable feedback has also come from Kate Rosenbloom and Hiram Clawson (UCSC), and James Taylor (previously Penn State, now Emory U.). Katie Pollard has contributed to the theory behind the dless and phyloP programs, and has also made many valuable suggestions for features and bug fixes.
From 2004-2007, PHAST was freely available for academic use, by email request, but the right to license it for a fee for commercial use had been reserved (at the advice of the UC administration). As of 2008, the package is fully open source, and is available for download from these pages under the terms of a BSD-style license.
The following publications detail methods implemented in PHAST. For applications of the software see complete list of publications.
Our newest paper (Hubisz et al., Briefings in Bioinformatics, 2011) will be the preferred citation for general use of PHAST. For phastCons, please cite Siepel et al., Genome Res, 2005, for phyloFit, cite Siepel and Haussler, Mol Biol Evol, 2004, for exoniphy cite Siepel and Haussler, RECOMB, 2004, for phyloP cite Pollard et al, Genome Res, 2010, and for dless, cite Siepel, Pollard, and Haussler, RECOMB 2006.