Gene : HBA2? hemoglobin alpha 2 (Homo sapiens)

I don't find any tissues (or organs) in which the expression of this gene is strongest? What is the size of the gene (promoter off) encoding this sequence?

  • $\begingroup$ Hello, where have you tried to find information on HBA2? $\endgroup$ Jun 17, 2013 at 10:03
  • $\begingroup$ On the NCBI site, but the site is rich in information and like I started in bioinformatics... $\endgroup$
    – user3813
    Jun 17, 2013 at 10:07
  • $\begingroup$ you could also use wikipedia as a starting point: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hemoglobin,_alpha_2 for many genes this will give you already a good overview and links to sources $\endgroup$ Jun 17, 2013 at 10:57
  • $\begingroup$ GeneCards is also a decent site for these type of information. $\endgroup$
    Jun 17, 2013 at 11:01
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Gene size will not include the promoter. The main reason is that the exact location of the promoter is not defined (or defined arbitrarily). $\endgroup$
    – Bitwise
    Jun 17, 2013 at 12:41

1 Answer 1


You mention that you "started in bioinformatics", so perhaps you might feel more comfortable taking such an approach to better characterize where the promoter for HBA2 might be.

As @Bitwise mentioned in his comment, "the promoter" is not a well defined region. Often times "we" take the promoter of a gene to be some arbitrary (2-4) kilobytes upstream from the TSS. With more high throughput data coming online (especially from ENCODE), we are starting to get a better picture of where the functional regulatory elements of genes might be.

By combining data from several different high-throughput assays across a variety of cell types, the human genome has been segmented into broad regions of interest. You might start by looking for where the "Predicted promoter region including transcription start site" segment is for HBA2.

I'd also take a closer look at the DNase-seq data in this "promoter region" across as many cell lines as they have processed for you to look for regions that are differentially occupied in hopes of identifying more precisely which parts in the promoter region might be important for the gene's expression (this would, of course, require you to connect DNAseq data with gene expression (RNA-seq) data).

  • $\begingroup$ Thank you for your comprehensive answers that helps me a lot I determined that the gene HBA2 had four SNPs but to find how many allele phenotypically it is I do not know if I should take the column'' Allele origin " or the column dbSNP allele Thank you again $\endgroup$
    – user3813
    Jun 17, 2013 at 16:25

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