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Table 2 Similarities and differences between bacterial and eukaryotic genome-wide association study approaches

From: Characterizing the genetic basis of bacterial phenotypes using genome-wide association studies: a new direction for bacteriology

Feature Bacteria Eukaryote
Ploidy Haploid Diploid
Genetic re-assortment Infrequent short gene conversion and horizontal gene transfer events Homologous recombination and chromosome segregation linked to reproduction
Accessory (non-core) genes Variable numbers in different species Rare
Linkage disequilibrium Variable across the genome and between species Variable across the genome
Population structure Asexual, generally highly structured, except for relatively rare homologous recombination events Sexual, variable allele frequencies in subpopulations owing to non-random mating, ancestral divergence, drift
Confounders in genome-wide association studies Population structure Population structure
How to move from association to causality Genetic reconstruction of mutations in laboratory strains, transposon mutant screens Forward genetics in animal models or cultured tissue systems; linkage to known genetic diseases; large monogenic association studies
Current burden of proof for causality Molecular Koch’s Postulates Combined genetic and experimental evidence