Gene Construction Kit software review

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Gene Construction Kit, GCK for short, is a commercial software mainly for making schematics of linear and circular DNA sequence (see screenshots on the right). There is a Windows and a Mac version.


  • typical academic single license just under $1000
  • non-academic license ~$1800


  • good graphical overview of sequences
  • switch to DNA sequence
  • import features from NCBI (starting v3.0)
  • non-expiring license


  • v3 files cannot be opened with v2.5
  • slow development; no Mac Intel version as of 2010-11
  • couple annoying bugs/feature shortcomings:
• some older GCK files cause v3 to hang; solution is to copy paste into new file and save in GCK3
• opening the font menu can take several seconds if you have many fonts installed; should be in a separate window not to slow down mouse movement every time one moves past the Font command in the Format menu;
• search only takes 255 chars; not enough for many DNA searches