UTGB Toolkit Index

Prepare A Genome Browser Interface

In the following explanation, we assume that the project folder name is demo.

To create a genome browser interface, type utgb gwt in the project folder:

leo@lecture-2008/demo> utgb gwt
[ScaffoldGenerator]     output folder: .
[ScaffoldGenerator]     packageName      = demo
[ScaffoldGenerator]     projectName      = demo
[ScaffoldGenerator]     moduleName       = demo.gwt.UTGBEntry
[ScaffoldGenerator]     clientPackageName        = demo.gwt.client
[ScaffoldGenerator]     entryPoint       = demo.gwt.client.UTGBEntry
[ScaffoldGenerator]     create a directory: ./src/main/java/demo/gwt
[ScaffoldGenerator]     create a directory: ./src/main/java/demo/gwt/public
[ScaffoldGenerator]     create a directory: ./src/main/java/demo/gwt/client
[ScaffoldGenerator]     create a file: ./src/main/java/demo/gwt/public/UTGBEntry.html
[ScaffoldGenerator]     create a file: ./src/main/java/demo/gwt/UTGBEntry.gwt.xml
[ScaffoldGenerator]     create a file: ./src/main/java/demo/gwt/client/UTGBEntry.java
[UTGBShell]     create a file: ./eclipse/demo-gwt.launch
[UTGBShell]     create a file: ./eclipse/demo-gwt-mac.launch

The following steps compile the genome browser interface:

leo@lecture-2008/demo> utgb compile

which converts Java codes into JavaScript codes. This compile process usually takes 30 seconds to 1 minute.

After the compilation finished, launch the server:

leo@lecture-2008/demo> utgb server -g

Then, open the url http://localhost:8989/demo/UTGBEntry.html with your web browser.

Development with Eclipse

utgb eclipse command generates Eclipse project files, .project, .classpath into the project folder:

leo@lecture-2008/demo> utgb eclipse

Then import the demo folder as a project in Eclipse. See also this document for the other necessary steps to use UTGB Toolkit with Eclipse. At least you have to set M2_REPO and UTGB_HOME variables in Eclipse.

In the Debug Configurations menu in Eclipse, you will find demo-gwt, demo-gwt-mac, demo-server Java application launch configurations.

  • The demo-gwt (or demo-gwt-mac for Mac OS X) opens GWT (Google Web Toolkit) shell console, and enables debugging genome browser interface without compilation from Java to JavaScript code. This launch confuguration is useful when developing the client-side code.
  • The demo-server configuration opens UTGB portable server. If you already compiled genome browser interface with utgb compile command, use the demo-server configuration to debug the server-side code.

Track View

The browser interface of UTGB consists of set of tracks. To change the tracks displayed in the browser, we call this set of tracks track view, you have to edit (project folder)/src/main/webapp/view/default-view.xml file or add another view XML file, e.g., (project folder)/src/main/webapp/view/custom-view.xml, etc. The defalut-view.xml file is loaded when opening the browser. To change the view file to be loaded at the startup time, use the following URL query parameter:


The genome browser will automatically load src/main/webapp/view/custom-view.xml file.

Here is the configuration setting when developing with Eclipse:


View XML Examples

The view XML file defines track contents to be displayed on the browser.


<trackGroup className="org.utgenome.gwt.utgb.client.track.TrackGroup" name="human">
  <property key="name">human</property>

  <!-- initial display location -->
    <property key="revision">hg17</property>
    <property key="species">human</property>
    <property key="target">chr1</property>
    <trackWindow start="6144720" end="6214720" width="700"/>

  <!-- UTGB Navigator configurations -->
  <track className="org.utgenome.gwt.utgb.client.track.lib.NavigatorTrack" name="UTGB Navigator" height="41" pack="true">
      <!-- menu contents -->
      <property key="sequenceList">[{"species":"human", "revision":["hg18","hg17"]},{"species":"mouse", "revision":["mm9"]}, {"species":"drosophila", "revision":["dm3"]}]</property>

  <!-- keyword search track provides links to other locations on genomes -->
  <track className="org.utgenome.gwt.utgb.client.track.lib.KeywordSearchTrack" name="Keyword Search" pack="true">
   <property key="keyword.examples">["Scaffold number (e.g. scaffold123)",
       "GenBank accession number (e.g. BJ013363)",
       "UniGene cluster identifier (e.g. Ola.5710)",
       "Clone number (e.g. MF01SSA159G06)"]
   <property key="species.scope">any</property>

  <!-- ruler for the whole sequence -->
  <track className="org.utgenome.gwt.utgb.client.track.lib.SequenceRulerTrack" name="Sequence Overview" height="14" pack="true">
    <property key="leftMargin">100</property>

  <!-- ruler for the track -->
  <track className="org.utgenome.gwt.utgb.client.track.lib.RulerTrack" name="Ruler" height="14" pack="true">
    <property key="leftMargin">100</property>

  <!-- Refseq gene track provided as a PNG image -->
  <track className="org.utgenome.gwt.utgb.client.track.lib.GenomeTrack" name="RefSeq Gene Demo" pack="true">
    <!-- use an image data as a track content --> 
    <property key="type">image</property>
    <!-- if you have to open spaces in the left-side set this value --> 
    <property key="leftMargin">100</property>
    <!-- this track retrieves the contents from (server_URL)/utgb-core/GeneViewer -->
    <property key="trackBaseURL">utgb-core/GeneViewer</property>

  <!-- Refseq gene table track provided as a text data -->
  <track className="org.utgenome.gwt.utgb.client.track.lib.GenomeTrack" name="RefSeq Gene Table Demo" height="150" pack="false">
    <!-- use an iframe html element as a track content --> 
    <property key="type">frame</property>
    <property key="leftMargin">100</property>
    <!-- this track retrieves the contents from (server_URL)/utgb-core/GeneViewer.tab -->
    <property key="trackBaseURL">utgb-core/GeneViewer.tab</property>

  <!-- you can add other tracks here -->

To make the change on the view XML file effective, you have to close the utgb server, and do 'utgb server' again.