Genome analysis and knowledge-driven variant interpretation with TGex

Dvir Dahary*, Yaron Golan, Yaron Mazor, Ofer Zelig, Ruth Barshir, Michal Twik, Tsippi Iny Stein, Guy Rosner, Revital Kariv, Fei Chen, Qiang Zhang, Yiping Shen, Marilyn Safran, Doron Lancet, Simon Fishilevich

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: The clinical genetics revolution ushers in great opportunities, accompanied by significant challenges. The fundamental mission in clinical genetics is to analyze genomes, and to identify the most relevant genetic variations underlying a patient's phenotypes and symptoms. The adoption of Whole Genome Sequencing requires novel capacities for interpretation of non-coding variants. Results: We present TGex, the Translational Genomics expert, a novel genome variation analysis and interpretation platform, with remarkable exome analysis capacities and a pioneering approach of non-coding variants interpretation. TGex's main strength is combining state-of-the-art variant filtering with knowledge-driven analysis made possible by VarElect, our highly effective gene-phenotype interpretation tool. VarElect leverages the widely used GeneCards knowledgebase, which integrates information from > 150 automatically-mined data sources. Access to such a comprehensive data compendium also facilitates TGex's broad variant annotation, supporting evidence exploration, and decision making. TGex has an interactive, user-friendly, and easy adaptive interface, ACMG compliance, and an automated reporting system. Beyond comprehensive whole exome sequence capabilities, TGex encompasses innovative non-coding variants interpretation, towards the goal of maximal exploitation of whole genome sequence analyses in the clinical genetics practice. This is enabled by GeneCards' recently developed GeneHancer, a novel integrative and fully annotated database of human enhancers and promoters. Examining use-cases from a variety of TGex users world-wide, we demonstrate its high diagnostic yields (42% for single exome and 50% for trios in 1500 rare genetic disease cases) and critical actionable genetic findings. The platform's support for integration with EHR and LIMS through dedicated APIs facilitates automated retrieval of patient data for TGex's customizable reporting engine, establishing a rapid and cost-effective workflow for an entire range of clinical genetic testing, including rare disorders, cancer predisposition, tumor biopsies and health screening. Conclusions: TGex is an innovative tool for the annotation, analysis and prioritization of coding and non-coding genomic variants. It provides access to an extensive knowledgebase of genomic annotations, with intuitive and flexible configuration options, allows quick adaptation, and addresses various workflow requirements. It thus simplifies and accelerates variant interpretation in clinical genetics workflows, with remarkable diagnostic yield, as exemplified in the described use cases. TGex is available at

Original languageEnglish
Article number200
JournalBMC Medical Genomics
Issue number1
StatePublished - 30 Dec 2019


  • Biomedical knowledgebase
  • Clinical variant interpretation and classification
  • Exome sequencing
  • Hamartomatous polyposis
  • Next generation sequencing analysis
  • Non-coding variants
  • Rare genetic diseases
  • Whole genome sequencing


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