Question: Parsing Genbank To Fasta Format In Biopython For Metagenomic Classification
gravatar for Josh Herr
6.9 years ago by
Josh Herr5.6k
University of Nebraska
Josh Herr5.6k wrote:

Please forgive the newbie question, but I am indeed new to BioPython. I'm just simply trying to parse a large file in Genbank format to FASTA format and am using Bio.SeqIO in BioPython.

I'm looking to parse an output file with the Accession number and Taxon in the FASTA > header and then the Genbank Taxonomy instead of the nucleotide sequence. I am comfortable with parsing just the fasta title and sequence. What I am doing is constructing a file to train RDP classifier for a Eukaryote marker gene (one does not already exist for my marker).

The output I am looking for is:

Eukaryota; Fungi; Dikarya; Ascomycota; Pezizomycotina; Eurotiomycetes; Eurotiomycetidae; Eurotiales; Trichocomaceae; Emericella; Emericella nidulans.


Bacteria; Proteobacteria; Gammaproteobacteria; Enterobacteriales; Enterobacteriaceae; Escherichia; Escherichia sp.

This is what I have used for simple nucleotide parsing.

from Bio import SeqIO

gbk_filename = "genbank.gbk"
faa_filename = "fasta.fna"

input_handle  = open(gbk_input, "r")
output_handle = open(faa_output, "w")

for seq_record in SeqIO.parse(input_handle, "genbank") :
    print "Parsing GenBank record %s" %
    output_handle.write(">%s %s\n%s\n" % (

print "Completed"

I know this is probably a simple fix, but I've searched for a long while and can't find an output in SeqIO for the taxonomy string, does anyone have any recommendations for modifying the above script?

Thanks so much for helping me out... I'm pretty new to the BioPython parsing here. My best to you all.

ADD COMMENTlink written 6.9 years ago by Josh Herr5.6k
gravatar for Damian Kao
6.9 years ago by
Damian Kao15k
Damian Kao15k wrote:

The annotations method returns a dictionary that holds the various attributes in the genbank file. This:


will return an array of the taxonomy line. To get it in the format you want, you can

'; '.join(seq_record.annotations['taxonomy'])
ADD COMMENTlink written 6.9 years ago by Damian Kao15k
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