The Minimum Substring Cover problem

Danny Hermelin, Dror Rawitz, Romeo Rizzi, Stéphane Vialette

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13 Scopus citations


In this paper, we consider the problem of covering a set of strings S with a set C of substrings in S, where C is said to cover S if every string in S can be written as a concatenation of the substrings in C. We discuss applications for the problem that arise in the context of computational biology and formal language theory. We then proceed to show several hardness of approximation results for the problem, and in the main part of the paper, we focus on devising approximation algorithms using two generic paradigms-the local-ratio technique and linear programming rounding.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1303-1312
Number of pages10
JournalInformation and Computation
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2008
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
E-mail addresses: (D. Hermelin), (D. Rawitz), (R.Rizzi), (S. Vialette). 1 Partially supported by the Caesarea Rothschild Institute (CRI). 2 Supported by the Italian-French PAI Galileo Project 08484VH.


  • Approximation algorithms
  • Dictionary Generation
  • Local-ratio
  • Randomized rounding
  • Substring Cover


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