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Genomics Extension for SQLite


This SQLite3 loadable extension adds features to the ubiquitous embedded RDBMS supporting applications in genome bioinformatics:

  • genomic range indexing for overlap queries & joins
  • in-SQL utility functions, e.g. reverse-complement DNA, parse "chr1:2,345-6,789"
  • automatic streaming storage compression (also available standalone)
  • reading directly from HTTP(S) URLs (also available standalone)
  • pre-tuned settings for "big data"

This November 2021 poster discusses the context and long-run ambitions:

GenomicSQLite Poster

Our Colab notebook demonstrates key features with Python, one of several language bindings.

USE AT YOUR OWN RISK: This project is not associated with the SQLite developers. The database storage extensions are designed to preserve ACID transaction safety, but they're young and unlikely to be totally bug-free.

Installation & Programming Guide

Start Here 👉 full documentation site

We supply the extension prepackaged for Linux x86-64 and macOS Catalina. An up-to-date version of SQLite itself is also required, as specified in the docs.

Programming language support:

  • C/C++
  • Python ≥3.6
  • Java & JVM languages
  • Rust

More to come. (Help wanted; see Language Bindings Guide)

Building from source


Most will prefer to install a pre-built shared library (see above). To build from source, see our Actions yml (Ubuntu 20.04) or Dockerfile (CentOS 7) used to build the more-portable releases. Briefly, you'll need:

  • C++11 build system
  • CMake ≥ 3.14
  • Dev packages: SQLite ≥ 3.31.0, Zstandard ≥ 1.3.4, libcurl

And incantations:

cmake -DCMAKE_BUILD_TYPE=Release -B build .
cmake --build build -j 4 --target genomicsqlite

...generating build/ To run the test suite, you'll furthermore need:

  • htslib ≥ 1.9, samtools, and tabix
  • pigz
  • Python ≥ 3.6 and packages: pytest pytest-xdist pre-commit black pylint flake8
  • JDK, mvn, rust
  • clang-format & cppcheck


pre-commit run --all-files  # formatters+linters
cmake -DCMAKE_BUILD_TYPE=Debug -B build .
cmake --build build -j 4
env -C build ctest -V