Kaviar (~Known VARiants) is a compilation of SNVs, indels, and complex variants observed in humans, designed to facilitate testing for the novelty and frequency of observed variants.


  • Released: September 23, 2015 (version 150810-Public)
  • Kaviar contains 169 million SNV sites (including 37M not in dbSNP) and incorporates data from 34 projects encompassing 77,238 individuals (13.0K whole genome, 64.3K exome).
  • The number of whole genomes has increased by more than 50% since last release due largely to the addition of 3842 genomes from the Inova Translational Medicine Institute (ITMI).
  • Kaviar also contains 48 million short indels and substitutions from a subset of the data sources.
  • Kaviar excludes cancer genomes but includes some data from cell lines and individuals affected by disease.
  • An effort was made to exclude data from related individuals.
  • Release notes, known issues, and changelog
  • Auxiliary info for some data sources.
  • Treemap depiction of sources.
  • Caution: variant novelty need not imply functional or clinical relevance. Conversely, known variants may have unknown functional implications. In some cases, even the reference form may be the detrimental variant.

Using it online

  • Query Kaviar interactively by clicking the Query Kaviar button above. Appropriate for small to medium size queries.
  • Query Kaviar as a web service using this URL in your code (here is example usage).
  • Query Kaviar via its beacon, as encouraged by the GA4GH.
Note: options in this box only appropriate if your data are not restricted (e.g., by IRB protocols) to prevent use of web services for analysis.