July 19, 2019  |  

An adenine code for DNA: A second life for N6-methyladenine.

DNA N6-methyladenine (6mA) protects against restriction enzymes in bacteria. However, isolated reports have suggested additional activities and its presence in other organisms, such as unicellular eukaryotes. New data now find that 6mA may have a gene regulatory function in green alga, worm, and fly, suggesting m6A as a potential “epigenetic” mark. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


July 19, 2019  |  

DNA methylation on N6-adenine in C. elegans.

In mammalian cells, DNA methylation on the fifth position of cytosine (5mC) plays an important role as an epigenetic mark. However, DNA methylation was considered to be absent in C. elegans because of the lack of detectable 5mC, as well as homologs of the cytosine DNA methyltransferases. Here, using multiple approaches, we demonstrate the presence of adenine N(6)-methylation (6mA) in C. elegans DNA. We further demonstrate that this modification increases trans-generationally in a paradigm of epigenetic inheritance. Importantly, we identify a DNA demethylase, NMAD-1, and a potential DNA methyltransferase, DAMT-1, which regulate 6mA levels and crosstalk between methylations of histone H3K4 and adenines and control the epigenetic inheritance of phenotypes associated with the loss of the H3K4me2 demethylase spr-5. Together, these data identify a DNA modification in C. elegans and raise the exciting possibility that 6mA may be a carrier of heritable epigenetic information in eukaryotes. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


July 19, 2019  |  

Reduction in chromosome mobility accompanies nuclear organization during early embryogenesis in Caenorhabditis elegans.

In differentiated cells, chromosomes are packed inside the cell nucleus in an organised fashion. In contrast, little is known about how chromosomes are packed in undifferentiated cells and how nuclear organization changes during development. To assess changes in nuclear organization during the earliest stages of development, we quantified the mobility of a pair of homologous chromosomal loci in the interphase nuclei of Caenorhabditis elegans embryos. The distribution of distances between homologous loci was consistent with a random distribution up to the 8-cell stage but not at later stages. The mobility of the loci was significantly reduced from the 2-cell to the 48-cell stage. Nuclear foci corresponding to epigenetic marks as well as heterochromatin and the nucleolus also appeared around the 8-cell stage. We propose that the earliest global transformation in nuclear organization occurs at the 8-cell stage during C. elegans embryogenesis.


July 7, 2019  |  

Hybrid de novo tandem repeat detection using short and long reads.

As one of the most studied genome rearrangements, tandem repeats have a considerable impact on genetic backgrounds of inherited diseases. Many methods designed for tandem repeat detection on reference sequences obtain high quality results. However, in the case of a de novo context, where no reference sequence is available, tandem repeat detection remains a difficult problem. The short reads obtained with the second-generation sequencing methods are not long enough to span regions that contain long repeats. This length limitation was tackled by the long reads obtained with the third-generation sequencing platforms such as Pacific Biosciences technologies. Nevertheless, the gain on the read length came with a significant increase of the error rate. The main objective of nowadays studies on long reads is to handle the high error rate up to 16%.In this paper we present MixTaR, the first de novo method for tandem repeat detection that combines the high-quality of short reads and the large length of long reads. Our hybrid algorithm uses the set of short reads for tandem repeat pattern detection based on a de Bruijn graph. These patterns are then validated using the long reads, and the tandem repeat sequences are constructed using local greedy assemblies.MixTaR is tested with both simulated and real reads from complex organisms. For a complete analysis of its robustness to errors, we use short and long reads with different error rates. The results are then analysed in terms of number of tandem repeats detected and the length of their patterns.Our method shows high precision and sensitivity. With low false positive rates even for highly erroneous reads, MixTaR is able to detect accurate tandem repeats with pattern lengths varying within a significant interval.


July 7, 2019  |  

OPERA-LG: efficient and exact scaffolding of large, repeat-rich eukaryotic genomes with performance guarantees.

The assembly of large, repeat-rich eukaryotic genomes represents a significant challenge in genomics. While long-read technologies have made the high-quality assembly of small, microbial genomes increasingly feasible, data generation can be expensive for larger genomes. OPERA-LG is a scalable, exact algorithm for the scaffold assembly of large, repeat-rich genomes, out-performing state-of-the-art programs for scaffold correctness and contiguity. It provides a rigorous framework for scaffolding of repetitive sequences and a systematic approach for combining data from different second-generation and third-generation sequencing technologies. OPERA-LG provides an avenue for systematic augmentation and improvement of thousands of existing draft eukaryotic genome assemblies.


July 7, 2019  |  

Minimap and miniasm: fast mapping and de novo assembly for noisy long sequences.

Single Molecule Real-Time (SMRT) sequencing technology and Oxford Nanopore technologies (ONT) produce reads over 10?kb in length, which have enabled high-quality genome assembly at an affordable cost. However, at present, long reads have an error rate as high as 10-15%. Complex and computationally intensive pipelines are required to assemble such reads.We present a new mapper, minimap and a de novo assembler, miniasm, for efficiently mapping and assembling SMRT and ONT reads without an error correction stage. They can often assemble a sequencing run of bacterial data into a single contig in a few minutes, and assemble 45-fold Caenorhabditis elegans data in 9?min, orders of magnitude faster than the existing pipelines, though the consensus sequence error rate is as high as raw reads. We also introduce a pairwise read mapping format and a graphical fragment assembly format, and demonstrate the interoperability between ours and current tools.https://github.com/lh3/minimap and https://github.com/lh3/miniasmhengli@broadinstitute.orgSupplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.


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