I know for example PolyX from Pierre's Jvarkit to find the number of repeated REF bases (homopolymers) around a position in a VCF file as described here exists.

I would like to know however if there tools that describes tandem repeats around a reported variant (TR) up to 6 repeated bases. I can imagine 3 different scenarios:

Scenario 1:

chrK    posY    C     G

TR of (ATC)

Scenario 2:

chrK    posY    A     T

             TR of (AACT)

Scenario 3:

chrK    posY    C     A

TR of (AG)    TR of (AG)

If you know any tools in mind that can be used for VCFs, I'd really appreciate citing them.

Thanks in advance.


2 Answers 2


The old program for doing this last updated in 2016 is Tandem Repeat Finder (TRF) here. This will not find a microsatellite sequence at a given variant, but instead find all tandem repeats in the genome and their position. It has been around for a long time.

You would then simply screen this output against the position of your variant. TRF may have been modified however to perform a search within given nucleotide boundaries.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Yes I also saw that software but I didn't give it a proper test. thanks for your Answer ! $\endgroup$
    – user324810
    Feb 27, 2020 at 20:33

After researching a bit, I found a couple of tools that take as input BAM files. I did not test them yet:

If I find more tools, I will update this post. After testing them, I will come back to share my feedback.


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