Whole Genome Sequencing

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Basepaws Whole Genome Sequencing (WGS) is the most comprehensive method for analyzing entire genomes.

What are the advantages?

  • Provides your cat's complete, future-proof genetic information, yielding roughly 10,000 times more data than other DNA tests.
  • Captures complex genetic variants, many of which might be missed with other genotyping methods.
  • Provides full access to the raw data, in addition to a health and breed report.
  • Delivers large volumes of genomic data contributing to the advancement of feline genetics and the discovery of new markers.

How does WGS compare to other genotyping methods?

High-depth WGS is the gold standard in genomics and is the most comprehensive way to obtain genetic information. It decodes 100% of the genome. In contrast, most commercially available DNA tests rely on a technology called DNA microarrays and typically decode only 0.01% - 0.02% of the genome. 


DNA Microarrays
  • Technology used by most human and animal DNA testing services
  • A small, but consistent set of genetic markers is used for genotyping every sample
Missing genetic information
Low-pass whole genome sequencing + imputation
  • Technology used in Basepaws’ cat DNA test
  • The genome is sequenced at a low depth, identifying a wide, but variable set of genetic markers
  • Genetic markers in areas of insufficient coverage are computationally imputed based on known patterns of marker co-inheritance
Computationally derived/ imputed genetic information
High-depth whole genome sequencing
  • Technology used in Basepaws’ whole genome sequencing service
  • The complete genome is sequenced at a high depth (15X)
  • All genetic information is obtained
Available genetic information


What do you get with our WGS service?

    • Your cat's raw whole genome sequencing data on a secure thumb drive:
    • genome-aligned data (.BAM file format)
    • a variant file (.VCF file format) describing all found genomic variants;
    • raw sequencing data (FASTQ format) representing at least 15X coverage of the genome
    • A continuously updated online health and breed report
    • 1-hour consultation with Basepaws genetics advisor and veterinarian.

Steps to High-Depth Whole Genome Sequencing:

  1. Sample collection. We will send you a Basepaws CatKit for DNA sample collection. The kit consists of a single buccal swab for collecting your cat’s inner cheek cells. Detailed instructions on sample collection are printed on the inside of the kit. Please wait at least 1 hour after your cat has had anything to eat or drink before using the kit.
  2. Sample arrives in the lab. You will receive an email when your sample has reached our lab.
  3. DNA quality check (2-3 days). We will extract your cat’s DNA and perform quality checks. 
  4. Sequencing quality check (4 weeks). We will prepare your cat’s DNA for WGS and perform a low-pass sequencing run to further assess the quality of the sample. 
  5. High-depth whole genome sequencing (3 weeks). If your cat’s sample passes the sequencing quality check, we will proceed with high-depth whole genome sequencing of the sample. 

Please allow up to 9 weeks to receive your data. If your sample fails any of our quality checks, you will be notified and advised on the next steps.