Track data hubs enable visualization of user-defined genome-wide annotations on the UCSC Genome Browser

Bioinformatics. 2014 Apr 1;30(7):1003-5. doi: 10.1093/bioinformatics/btt637. Epub 2013 Nov 13.


Summary: Track data hubs provide an efficient mechanism for visualizing remotely hosted Internet-accessible collections of genome annotations. Hub datasets can be organized, configured and fully integrated into the University of California Santa Cruz (UCSC) Genome Browser and accessed through the familiar browser interface. For the first time, individuals can use the complete browser feature set to view custom datasets without the overhead of setting up and maintaining a mirror.

Availability and implementation: Source code for the BigWig, BigBed and Genome Browser software is freely available for non-commercial use at, implemented in C and supported on Linux. Binaries for the BigWig and BigBed creation and parsing utilities may be downloaded at Binary Alignment/Map (BAM) and Variant Call Format (VCF)/tabix utilities are available from and The UCSC Genome Browser is publicly accessible at

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Databases, Genetic*
  • Genome*
  • Genomics / methods*
  • Internet
  • Software