Methods Enzymol 496 , 289-318 ( 2011)
While sequencing methods were available in the late 1970s, it was not until the human genome project and a significant influx of funds for such research that this technology became high throughput. The fields of microbiology and microbial ecology, among many others, have been tremendously impacted over the years, to such an extent that the determination of complete microbial genome sequences is now commonplace. Given the lower costs of next-generation sequencing platforms, even small laboratories from around the world will be able to generate millions of base pairs of data, equivalent to entire genomes worth of sequence information. With this prospect just around the corner, it is timely to provide an overview of the genomics process: from sample preparation to some of the analytical methods used to gain functional knowledge from sequence information.