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A readme file (README_DCC.txt or README.txt) is an archive description text file that provides background information on the archive as well as descriptions of files found within the archive.

Readme files are automatically generated by the DCC to provide a consistent overview for archives across the project. The readme file provides information regarding the following:

One readme file exists for each archive and is named as README_DCC.txt (or the deprecated name, README.txt, for older archives).


Below is an example of a README file that was automatically generated by the DCC upon archive processing:

README.txt for a Level 3 SNP 6 archive
README for archive

This file was automatically generated on 06/30/2010 using the TCGA DCC Archive Processing System.

The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA), a project of the National Cancer Institute and the National Human
Genome Research Institute (NHGRI), is the foundation of a large-scale collaborative effort to
understand the genomic changes that occur in cancer. For more information, see

The files in this archive contain data derived from tissue samples of patients that were diagnosed
with Glioblastoma multiforme. The data was produced by the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard
( Cancer Genomic Characterization Center (CGCC) using the Affymetrix Genome-Wide Human
SNP Array 6.0 platform.

This archive is the 1002nd revision of the 1st archive and contains only Level 3
(segmented/interpreted) data.

The MANIFEST.txt lists all the files, and their MD5 signatures, that should be included in this
complete archive.

A DESCRIPTION.txt file may be included by the submitting center that provides details about the data
files included in this archive.

The TCGA Data Primer provides an in depth description of TCGA data enterprise including data
classification and organization (including data types and data levels), how to access the data, and
a description of some possible ways to aggregate TCGA data.

For even more information, please visit the TCGA Data Portal at

For help, please contact NCICB Support
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