Reference-guided DNA sequencing and alignment is an important process in computational molecular biology. The amount of DNA data grows very fast, and many new genomes are waiting to be sequenced while millions of private genomes need to be re-sequenced. Each human genome has 3.2B base pairs, and each one could be stored with 2 bits of information, so one human genome would take 6.4B bits or ∼760MB of storage (National Institute of General Medical Sciences, n.d.). Today's most powerful tensor processing units cannot handle the volume of DNA data necessitating a major leap in computing power. It is, therefore, important to investigate the usefulness of quantum computers in genomic data analysis, especially in DNA sequence alignment. Quantum computers are expected to be involved in DNA sequencing, initially as parts of classical systems, acting as quantum accelerators. The number of available qubits is increasing annually, and future quantum computers could conduct DNA sequencing, taking the place of classical computing systems. We present a novel quantum algorithm for reference-guided DNA sequence alignment modeled with gate-based quantum computing. The algorithm is scalable, can be integrated into existing classical DNA sequencing systems and is intentionally structured to limit computational errors. The quantum algorithm has been tested using the quantum processing units and simulators provided by IBM Quantum, and its correctness has been confirmed.

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