# The fasta format¶

The fasta format is certainly the most widely used sequence file format. This is certainly due to its great simplicity. It was originally created for the Lipman and Pearson FASTA program.

In fasta format a sequence is represented by a title line beginning with a > character and the sequences by itself following the iupac code. The sequence is usually split other severals lines of the same length (expect for the last one)

>my_sequence this is my pretty sequence
ACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGT
GTGCTGACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTGTTT
AACGACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGT


This is no special format for the title line excepting that this line should be unique. Usually the first word following the > character is considered as the sequence identifier. The end of the title line corresponding to a description of the sequence.

Several sequences can be concatenated in a same file. The description of the next sequence is just pasted at the end of the record of the previous one

>sequence_A this is my first pretty sequence
ACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGT
GTGCTGACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTGTTT
AACGACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGT
>sequence_B this is my second pretty sequence
ACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGT
GTGCTGACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTGTTT
AACGACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGT
>sequence_C this is my third pretty sequence
ACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGT
GTGCTGACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGTGTTT
AACGACGTTGCAGTACGTTGCAGT