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SFARI Gene is an evolving online database designed to permit quick entrée into the genetics of autism, and to help researchers track the ever-expanding genetic risk factors that emerge in the literature.

The site provides several ways of accessing data on autism candidate genes:

  • Human Gene Module lists more than 790 genes implicated in autism, with annotations and links to published papers.
  • Animal Model Module lists more than 840 lines of mice that carry mutations in the genes listed in the Human Gene Module, in ASD-associated copy number variants (CNVs), or have been induced by biological or chemical agents. Of note, 167 of these mouse models were treated with drugs to rescue at least one ASD-related phenotype. In addition, this module now includes rat models, with 35 lines of rats that carry mutations in genes listed in the Human Gene Module, or that have been induced by biological or chemical agents.
  • Protein Interaction (PIN) Module curates all protein-protein and protein-nucleic acid interactions reported in the literature.
  • Copy Number Variant (CNV) Module provides exhaustive detail on all CNVs reported in individuals with autism.
  • Gene Scoring Module offers critical evaluation of the strength of the evidence for each gene’s association with autism. These gene scores are increasingly being used in the published literature1-9. At least 50 high-ranking candidate risk genes (see Table 1) have so far been identified.

The following papers provide further information about the database:

Abrahams B.S., Arking D.E., Campbell D.B., Mefford H.C., Morrow E.M., Weiss L.A., Menashe I., Wadkins T., Banerjee-Basu S., Packer A. SFARI Gene 2.0: a community-driven knowledgebase for the autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). Mol. Autism 4, 36 (2013) PubMed

Banerjee-Basu S., Packer A. SFARI Gene: an evolving database for the autism research community. Dis. Model Mech 3, 133-135 (2010) PubMed

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2. Parikshak N.N. et al. Cell 155, 1008-1021 (2013) PubMed

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4. Toma C. et al. Mol. Psych. 19, 784-790 (2014) PubMed

5. Sugathan A. et al. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 111, E4468-4477 (2014) PubMed

6. Griswold A.J. et al. Mol Autism 6, 43 (2015) PubMed

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8. Wilkinson B. et al. Transl. Psychiatry 5, e568 (2015) PubMed

9. Yao P. et al. Nat. Neurosci. 18, 1168-1174 (2015) PubMed