k-mer

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The term k-mer (or x-mer where x can be virtually any consonant of choice) usually refers to a specific n-tuple or n-gram of nucleic acid or amino acid sequences that can be used to identify certain regions within biomolecules like DNA (e.g. for gene prediction) or proteins. Either k-mer strings as such can be used for finding regions of interest, or k-mer statistics giving discrete probability distributions of a number of possible k-mer combinations (or rather permutations with repetitions) are used. Specific short k-mers are called oligomers or "oligos" for short.

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Examples[edit]

  • A sequence of dimers = AGAGAGAGAGAGAG
  • A sequence of trimers = AAGAAGAAGAAG

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