Genome-wide phenotypic screens: the total greater than the sum of the parts
Connecting genotypes to phenotypes is critical for uncovering gene functions, mapping biological networks and understanding the causes of rare and common diseases. Scalable experimental approaches, including gene editing, silencing and knockout, allow to systematically examine how variation at every genomic locus affects an organism, and open the door to new ideas in integrative modeling. Here, I describe the assembly and analysis of the largest set of systematic genetic perturbations to date -- the Yeast Phenome. This dataset combines ~11,000 phenotypic screens of the genome-wide collection of knock-out mutants in budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, and integrates the work of 270 laboratories and 370 publications. The Yeast Phenome provides the current largest, richest and most systematic phenotypic description of an organism, and enables a multitude of enquires into the nature of gene-gene, phenotype-phenotype and gene-phenotype relationships.