↓ Skip to main content

FastPop: a rapid principal component derived method to infer intercontinental ancestry using genetic data

Overview of attention for article published in BMC Bioinformatics, March 2016
Altmetric Badge

About this Attention Score

  • Above-average Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age (54th percentile)

Mentioned by

6 tweeters


31 Dimensions

Readers on

44 Mendeley
You are seeing a free-to-access but limited selection of the activity Altmetric has collected about this research output. Click here to find out more.
FastPop: a rapid principal component derived method to infer intercontinental ancestry using genetic data
Published in
BMC Bioinformatics, March 2016
DOI 10.1186/s12859-016-0965-1
Pubmed ID

Yafang Li, Jinyoung Byun, Guoshuai Cai, Xiangjun Xiao, Younghun Han, Olivier Cornelis, James E. Dinulos, Joe Dennis, Douglas Easton, Ivan Gorlov, Michael F. Seldin, Christopher I. Amos


Identifying subpopulations within a study and inferring intercontinental ancestry of the samples are important steps in genome wide association studies. Two software packages are widely used in analysis of substructure: Structure and Eigenstrat. Structure assigns each individual to a population by using a Bayesian method with multiple tuning parameters. It requires considerable computational time when dealing with thousands of samples and lacks the ability to create scores that could be used as covariates. Eigenstrat uses a principal component analysis method to model all sources of sampling variation. However, it does not readily provide information directly relevant to ancestral origin; the eigenvectors generated by Eigenstrat are sample specific and thus cannot be generalized to other individuals. We developed FastPop, an efficient R package that fills the gap between Structure and Eigenstrat. It can: 1, generate PCA scores that identify ancestral origins and can be used for multiple studies; 2, infer ancestry information for data arising from two or more intercontinental origins. We demonstrate the use of FastPop using 2318 SNP markers selected from the genome based on high variability among European, Asian and West African (African) populations. We conducted an analysis of 505 Hapmap samples with European, African or Asian ancestry along with 19661 additional samples of unknown ancestry. The results from FastPop are highly consistent with those obtained by Structure across the 19661 samples we studied. The correlations of the results between FastPop and Structure are 0.99, 0.97 and 0.99 for European, African and Asian ancestry scores, respectively. Compared with Structure, FastPop is more efficient as it finished ancestry inference for 19661 samples in 16 min compared with 21-24 h required by Structure. FastPop also provided scores based on SNP weights so the scores of reference population can be applied to other studies provided the same set of markers are used. We also present application of the method for studying four continental populations (European, Asian, African, and Native American). We developed an algorithm that can infer ancestries on data involving two or more intercontinental origins. It is efficient for analyzing large datasets. Additionally the PCA derived scores can be applied to multiple data sets to ensure the same ancestry analysis is applied to all studies.

Twitter Demographics

The data shown below were collected from the profiles of 6 tweeters who shared this research output. Click here to find out more about how the information was compiled.

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 44 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
Unknown 44 100%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Student > Ph. D. Student 12 27%
Student > Master 9 20%
Researcher 8 18%
Student > Bachelor 5 11%
Other 2 5%
Other 4 9%
Unknown 4 9%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology 15 34%
Agricultural and Biological Sciences 7 16%
Computer Science 3 7%
Medicine and Dentistry 3 7%
Philosophy 1 2%
Other 3 7%
Unknown 12 27%

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 2. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 10 August 2016.
All research outputs
of 17,800,904 outputs
Outputs from BMC Bioinformatics
of 6,267 outputs
Outputs of similar age
of 272,672 outputs
Outputs of similar age from BMC Bioinformatics
of 7 outputs
Altmetric has tracked 17,800,904 research outputs across all sources so far. This one is in the 42nd percentile – i.e., 42% of other outputs scored the same or lower than it.
So far Altmetric has tracked 6,267 research outputs from this source. They typically receive a little more attention than average, with a mean Attention Score of 5.2. This one is in the 41st percentile – i.e., 41% of its peers scored the same or lower than it.
Older research outputs will score higher simply because they've had more time to accumulate mentions. To account for age we can compare this Altmetric Attention Score to the 272,672 tracked outputs that were published within six weeks on either side of this one in any source. This one has gotten more attention than average, scoring higher than 54% of its contemporaries.
We're also able to compare this research output to 7 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one.