Project description:We developed a targeted RNA sequencing method that couples microfluidics-based multiplex PCR and deep sequencing (mmPCR-seq) to uniformly and simultaneously amplify up to 960 loci in 48 samples independently of their gene expression levels and to accurately and cost-effectively measure allelic ratios even for low-quantity or low-quality RNA samples. We applied mmPCR-seq to RNA editing and allele-specific expression studies. mmPCR-seq complements RNA-seq for studying allelic variations in the transcriptome.
Project description:Adenosine-to-inosine (A-to-I) RNA editing is an epigenetic modification catalyzed by adenosine deaminases acting on RNA (ADARs), and is especially prevalent in the brain. We used the highly accurate microfluidics-based multiplex PCR sequencing (mmPCR-seq) technique to assess the effects of development and environmental stress on A-to-I editing at 146 pre-selected, conserved sites in the rat prefrontal cortex and amygdala. Furthermore, we asked whether changes in editing can be observed in offspring of stress-exposed rats. In parallel, we assessed changes in ADARs expression levels.In agreement with previous studies, we found editing to be generally higher in adult compared to neonatal rat brain. At birth, editing was generally lower in prefrontal cortex than in amygdala. Stress affected editing at the serotonin receptor 2c (Htr2c), and editing at this site was significantly altered in offspring of rats exposed to prereproductive stress across two generations. Stress-induced changes in Htr2c editing measured with mmPCR-seq were comparable to changes measured with Sanger and Illumina sequencing. Developmental and stress-induced changes in Adar and Adarb1 mRNA expression were observed but did not correlate with editing changes.Our findings indicate that mmPCR-seq can accurately detect A-to-I RNA editing in rat brain samples, and confirm previous accounts of a developmental increase in RNA editing rates. Our findings also point to stress in adolescence as an environmental factor that alters RNA editing patterns several generations forward, joining a growing body of literature describing the transgenerational effects of stress.
Project description:We demonstrate proof-of-concept for the use of massively multiplexed PCR and next-generation sequencing (mmPCR-NGS) to identify both clonal and subclonal copy-number variants (CNVs) in circulating tumor DNA. This is the first report of a targeted methodology for detection of CNVs in plasma. Using an in vitro model of cell-free DNA, we show that mmPCR-NGS can accurately detect CNVs with average allelic imbalances as low as 0.5%, an improvement over previously reported whole-genome sequencing approaches. Our method revealed differences in the spectrum of CNVs detected in tumor tissue subsections and matching plasma samples from 11 patients with stage II breast cancer. Moreover, we showed that liquid biopsies are able to detect subclonal mutations that may be missed in tumor tissue biopsies. We anticipate that this mmPCR-NGS methodology will have broad applicability for the characterization, diagnosis, and therapeutic monitoring of CNV-enriched cancers, such as breast, ovarian, and lung cancer.
Project description:We report the application of mmPCR-seq to male whole body samples from 131 strains of the DGRP. We quantified RNA editing at 605 different loci using a microfluidic multiplex PCR method coupled with deep sequencing. RT-PCR amplification of 605 loci from 131 fly strains to quantify RNA editing levels.
Project description:BACKGROUND: The current persistence of Triatoma infestans (one of the main vectors of Chagas disease) in some domestic areas could be related to re-colonization by wild populations which are increasingly reported. However, the infection rate and the genetic characterization of the Trypanosoma cruzi strains infecting these populations are very limited. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Of 333 wild Triatoma infestans specimens collected from north to south of a Chagas disease endemic area in Bolivia, we characterized 234 stocks of Trypanosoma cruzi using mini-exon multiplex PCR (MMPCR) and sequencing the glucose phosphate isomerase (Gpi) gene. Of the six genetic lineages ("discrete typing units"; DTU) (TcI-VI) presently recognized in T. cruzi, TcI (99.1%) was overdominant on TcIII (0.9%) in wild Andean T. infestans, which presented a 71.7% infection rate as evaluated by microscopy. In the lowlands (Bolivian Chaco), 17 "dark morph" T. infestans were analyzed. None of them were positive for parasites after microscopic examination, although one TcI stock and one TcII stock were identified using MMPCR and sequencing. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: By exploring large-scale DTUs that infect the wild populations of T. infestans, this study opens the discussion on the origin of TcI and TcV DTUs that are predominant in domestic Bolivian cycles.
Project description:Photoactive RNA probes have unique advantages in the identification of microRNA (miR) targets due to their ability for efficient conjugation to the target sequences by covalent crosslinking, providing stable miR-mRNA complexes for further analysis. Here, we report a highly efficient and straightforward method for miR target identification that is based on photo-reactive chemical probes and RNA-seq technology (denotes PCP-Seq). UV reactive probes were prepared by incorporating psoralen in the specific position of the seed sequence of miR. Cancer cells that were transfected with the miR probes were treated with UV, following the isolation of poly(A) RNA and sequencing of the transcriptome. Quantitative analysis of RNA-seq reads and subsequent validation by qPCR, dual luciferase assay as well as western blotting confirmed that PCP-Seq could highly efficiently identify multiple targets of different miRs in the lung cancer cell line, such as targets PTTG1 and PTGR1 of miR-29a and ILF2 of miR-34a. Collectively, our data showed that PCP-Seq is a robust strategy for miR targets identification, and unique in the identification of the targets that escape degradation by miRISC and maintain normal cellular level, although their translation is repressed.
Project description:Standard noninvasive methods for detecting renal allograft rejection and injury have poor sensitivity and specificity. Plasma donor-derived cell-free DNA (dd-cfDNA) has been reported to accurately detect allograft rejection and injury in transplant recipients and shown to discriminate rejection from stable organ function in kidney transplant recipients. This study used a novel single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP)-based massively multiplexed PCR (mmPCR) methodology to measure dd-cfDNA in various types of renal transplant recipients for the detection of allograft rejection/injury without prior knowledge of donor genotypes. A total of 300 plasma samples (217 biopsy-matched: 38 with active rejection (AR), 72 borderline rejection (BL), 82 with stable allografts (STA), and 25 with other injury (OI)) were collected from 193 unique renal transplant patients; dd- cfDNA was processed by mmPCR targeting 13,392 SNPs. Median dd-cfDNA was significantly higher in samples with biopsy-proven AR (2.3%) versus BL (0.6%), OI (0.7%), and STA (0.4%) (p < 0.0001 all comparisons). The SNP-based dd-cfDNA assay discriminated active from non-rejection status with an area under the curve (AUC) of 0.87, 88.7% sensitivity (95% CI, 77.7?99.8%) and 72.6% specificity (95% CI, 65.4?79.8%) at a prespecified cutoff (>1% dd-cfDNA). Of 13 patients with AR findings at a routine protocol biopsy six-months post transplantation, 12 (92%) were detected positive by dd-cfDNA. This SNP-based dd-cfDNA assay detected allograft rejection with superior performance compared with the current standard of care. These data support the feasibility of using this assay to detect disease prior to renal failure and optimize patient management in the case of allograft injury.
Project description:We report patterns of allele-specific expression across multiple tissues of a single individual using RNA-Seq and mmPCR-Seq data Overall design: Examination of ten different tissues