Video Tip of the Week: VectorEditor

For this week’s video tip of the week, I’ll give you a quick tour of the VectorEditor software. It’s a handy tool that you can install locally, or use on the web, to edit and display features of your DNA constructs. It’s got all of the key features that you might want–annotations, graphics, sequence, restriction sites, 6-frame translation, and more.

Their succinct description:

Open source, web based cross platform and cross browser DNA sequence editing and analysis tool.

But it’s so quick and easy to use that some people might find it really handy for introducing students to some of the concepts.

I came across it thanks to the GenoCAD team. They have sponsored us to create training materials, and one of the things we wanted to demonstrate was that you could take a DNA design from your computer-assisted design collection at GenoCAD, export it with GenBank features, and upload that into other tools that are compatible. Then the GenBank features become items in the new display or other tools you might use. They showed me VectorEditor as a sample of how easy that is.

So in this video tip I’ll show you how I take a design from my GenoCAD collection, load it into VectorEditor, and we’ll see some of the cool features they have in their software.

Quick links:

VectorEditor working demo web tool:

VectorEditor software:

GenoCAD web tools:

GenoCAD tutorial suite (freely available because it is supported by NSF funding to the GenoCAD team):


Ham T.S., Dmytriv Z., Plahar H., Chen J., Hillson N.J. & Keasling J.D. (2012). Design, implementation and practice of JBEI-ICE: an open source biological part registry platform and tools, Nucleic Acids Research, 40 (18) e141-e141. DOI:

Wilson M.L., Hertzberg R., Adam L. & Peccoud J. (2011). A step-by-step introduction to rule-based design of synthetic genetic constructs using GenoCAD., Methods Enzymol., 498 173-188. DOI:

Hector Plahar and Joanna Chen are the team listed on the software page and gave me these additional details for the acknowledgement: Developed by researchers at the US D.O.E. Office of Science’s Joint BioEnergy Institute, at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab.