NAR Top Articles - Genomics
The methylomes of six bacteria
Murray, IA; Clark, TA; Morgan, RD; Boitano, M; Anton, BP; Luong, K; Fomenkov, A; Turner, SW; Korlach, J; Roberts, RJ
Nucleic Acids Res. (2012) 40 (22): 11450-11462
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Six bacterial genomes, Geobacter metallireducens GS-15, Chromohalobacter salexigens, Vibrio breoganii 1C-10, Bacillus cereus ATCC 10987, Campylobacter jejuni subsp. jejuni 81-176 and C. jejuni NCTC 11168, all of which had previously been sequenced using other platforms were re-sequenced using single-molecule, real-time (SMRT) sequencing specifically to analyze their methylomes. In every case a number of new N-6-methyladenine ((m6)A) and N-4-methylcytosine (C-m4) methylation patterns were discovered and the DNA methyltransferases (MTases) responsible for those methylation patterns were assigned. In 15 cases, it was possible to match MTase genes with MTase recognition sequences without further sub-cloning. Two Type I restriction systems required sub-cloning to differentiate their recognition sequences, while four MTase genes that were not expressed in the native organism were sub-cloned to test for viability and recognition sequences. Two of these proved active. No attempt was made to detect 5-methylcytosine (C-m5) recognition motifs from the SMRT (R) sequencing data because this modification produces weaker signals using current methods...
A comparison of RNA-Seq and high-density exon array for detecting differential gene expression between closely related species
Liu, S; Lin, L; Jiang, P; Wang, D; Xing, Y
Nucleic Acids Res. (2011) 39 (2): 578-588
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RNA-Seq has emerged as a revolutionary technology for transcriptome analysis. In this article, we report a systematic comparison of RNA-Seq and high-density exon array for detecting differential gene expression between closely related species. On a panel of human/chimpanzee/rhesus cerebellum RNA samples previously examined by the high-density human exon junction array (HJAY) and real-time qPCR, we generated 48.68 million RNA-Seq reads. Our results indicate that RNA-Seq has significantly improved gene coverage and increased sensitivity for differentially expressed genes compared with the high-density HJAY array. Meanwhile, we observed a systematic increase in the RNA-Seq error rate for lowly expressed genes. Specifically, between-species DEGs detected by array/qPCR but missed by RNA-Seq were characterized by relatively low expression levels, as indicated by lower RNA-Seq read counts, lower HJAY array expression indices and higher qPCR raw cycle threshold values. Furthermore, this issue was not unique to between-species comparisons of gene expression...
A systems biology approach sheds new light on Escherichia coli acid resistance
Stincone, A; Daudi, N; Rahman, AS; Antczak, P; Henderson, I; Cole, J; Johnson, MD; Lund, P; Falciani, F
Nucleic Acids Res. (2011) 39 (17): 7512-7528
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In order to develop an infection, diarrhogenic Escherichia coli has to pass through the stomach, where the pH can be as low as 1. Mechanisms that enable E. coli to survive in low pH are thus potentially relevant for pathogenicity. Four acid response systems involved in reducing the concentration of intracellular protons have been identified so far. However, it is still unclear to what extent the regulation of other important cellular functions may be required for survival in acid conditions. Here, we have combined molecular and phenotypic analysis of wild-type and mutant strains with computational network inference to identify molecular pathways underlying E. coli response to mild and strong acid conditions. The interpretative model we have developed led to the hypothesis that a complex transcriptional programme, dependent on the two-component system regulator OmpR and involving a switch between aerobic and anaerobic metabolism, may be key for survival. Experimental validation has shown that the OmpR is responsible for controlling a sizeable component of the transcriptional programme to acid exposure...
Cell type-specific genomics of Drosophila neurons
Henry, GL; Davis, FP; Picard, S; Eddy, SR
Nucleic Acids Res. (2012) 40 (19): 9691-9704
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Many tools are available to analyse genomes but are often challenging to use in a cell type-specific context. We have developed a method similar to the isolation of nuclei tagged in a specific cell type (INTACT) technique [Deal,R.B. and Henikoff,S. (2010) A simple method for gene expression and chromatin profiling of individual cell types within a tissue. Dev. Cell, 18, 1030-1040; Steiner,F.A., Talbert,P.B., Kasinathan,S., Deal,R.B. and Henikoff,S. (2012) Cell-type-specific nuclei purification from whole animals for genome-wide expression and chromatin profiling. Genome Res., doi:10.1101/gr.131748.111], first developed in plants, for use in Drosophila neurons. We profile gene expression and histone modifications in Kenyon cells and octopaminergic neurons in the adult brain. In addition to recovering known gene expression differences, we also observe significant cell type-specific chromatin modifications. In particular, a small subset of differentially expressed genes exhibits a striking anti-correlation between repressive and activating histone modifications. These genes are enriched for transcription factors, recovering those known to regulate mushroom body identity and predicting analogous regulators of octopaminergic neurons...
Identification of novel NRF2-regulated genes by ChIP-Seq: influence on retinoid X receptor alpha
Chorley, BN; Campbell, MR; Wang, XT; Karaca, M; Sambandan, D; Bangura, F; Xue, P; Pi, JB; Kleeberger, SR; Bell, DA
Nucleic Acids Res. (2012) 40 (15): 7416-7429
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Cellular oxidative and electrophilic stress triggers a protective response in mammals regulated by NRF2 (nuclear factor (erythroid-derived) 2-like; NFE2L2) binding to deoxyribonucleic acid-regulatory sequences near stress-responsive genes. Studies using Nrf2-deficient mice suggest that hundreds of genes may be regulated by NRF2. To identify human NRF2-regulated genes, we conducted chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP)-sequencing experiments in lymphoid cells treated with the dietary isothiocyanate, sulforaphane (SFN) and carried out follow-up biological experiments on candidates. We found 242 high confidence, NRF2-bound genomic regions and 96% of these regions contained NRF2-regulatory sequence motifs. The majority of binding sites were near potential novel members of the NRF2 pathway. Validation of selected candidate genes using parallel ChIP techniques and in NRF2-silenced cell lines indicated that the expression of about two-thirds of the candidates are likely to be directly NRF2-dependent including retinoid X receptor alpha (RXRA)...
Genome-wide transcriptome analysis of the plant pathogen Xanthomonas identifies sRNAs with putative virulence functions
Schmidtke, C; Findeiss, S; Sharma, CM; Kuhfuss, J; Hoffmann, S; Vogel, J; Stadler, PF; Bonas, U
Nucleic Acids Res. (2012) 40 (5): 2020-2031
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The Gram-negative plant-pathogenic bacterium Xanthomonas campestris pv. vesicatoria (Xcv) is an important model to elucidate the mechanisms involved in the interaction with the host. To gain insight into the transcriptome of the Xcv strain 85-10, we took a differential RNA sequencing (dRNA-seq) approach. Using a novel method to automatically generate comprehensive transcription start site (TSS) maps we report 1421 putative TSSs in the Xcv genome. Genes in Xcv exhibit a poorly conserved -10 promoter element and no consensus Shine-Dalgarno sequence. Moreover, 14% of all mRNAs are leaderless and 13% of them have unusually long 5'-UTRs. Northern blot analyses confirmed 16 intergenic small RNAs and seven cis-encoded antisense RNAs in Xcv. Expression of eight intergenic transcripts was controlled by HrpG and HrpX, key regulators of the Xcv type III secretion system. More detailed characterization identified sX12 as a small RNA that controls virulence of Xcv by affecting the interaction of the pathogen and its host plants...
Diversity of bacterial type II toxin-antitoxin systems: a comprehensive search and functional analysis of novel families
Leplae, R; Geeraerts, D; Hallez, R; Guglielmini, J; Dreze, P; Van Melderen, L
Nucleic Acids Res. (2011) 39 (13): 5513-5525
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Type II toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems are generally composed of two genes organized in an operon, encoding a labile antitoxin and a stable toxin. They were first discovered on plasmids where they contribute to plasmid stability by a phenomenon denoted as 'addiction', and subsequently in bacterial chromosomes. To discover novel families of antitoxins and toxins, we developed a bioinformatics approach based on the 'guilt by association' principle. Extensive experimental validation in Escherichia coli of predicted antitoxins and toxins increased significantly the number of validated systems and defined novel toxin and antitoxin families. Our data suggest that toxin families as well as antitoxin families originate from distinct ancestors that were assembled multiple times during evolution. Toxin and antitoxin families found on plasmids tend to be promiscuous and widespread, indicating that TA systems move through horizontal gene transfer. We propose that due to their addictive properties, TA systems are likely to be maintained in chromosomes even though they do not necessarily confer an advantage to their bacterial hosts...
Analysis of genomic variation in non-coding elements using population-scale sequencing data from the 1000 Genomes Project
Mu, XJ; Lu, ZJ; Kong, Y; Lam, HYK; Gerstein, MB
Nucleic Acids Res. (2011) 39 (16): 7058-7076
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In the human genome, it has been estimated that considerably more sequence is under natural selection in non-coding regions [such as transcription-factor binding sites (TF-binding sites) and non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs)] compared to protein-coding ones. However, less attention has been paid to them. To study selective pressure on non-coding elements, we use next-generation sequencing data from the recently completed pilot phase of the 1000 Genomes Project, which, compared to traditional methods, allows for the characterization of a full spectrum of genomic variations, including single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), short insertions and deletions (indels) and structural variations (SVs). We develop a framework for combining these variation data with non-coding elements, calculating various population-based metrics to compare classes and subclasses of elements, and developing element-aware aggregation procedures to probe the internal structure of an element. Overall, we find that TF-binding sites and ncRNAs are less selectively constrained for SNPs than coding sequences (CDSs), but more constrained than a neutral reference...
Insights into the evolution of Archaea and eukaryotic protein modifier systems revealed by the genome of a novel archaeal group
Nunoura, T; Takaki, Y; Kakuta, J; Nishi, S; Sugahara, J; Kazama, H; Chee, GJ; Hattori, M; Kanai, A; Atomi, H; Takai, K; Takami, H
Nucleic Acids Res. (2011) 39 (8): 3204-3223
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The domain Archaea has historically been divided into two phyla, the Crenarchaeota and Euryarchaeota. Although regarded as members of the Crenarchaeota based on small subunit rRNA phylogeny, environmental genomics and efforts for cultivation have recently revealed two novel phyla/divisions in the Archaea; the 'Thaumarchaeota' and 'Korarchaeota'. Here, we show the genome sequence of Candidatus 'Caldiarchaeum subterraneum' that represents an uncultivated crenarchaeotic group. A composite genome was reconstructed from a metagenomic library previously prepared from a microbial mat at a geothermal water stream of a sub-surface gold mine. The genome was found to be clearly distinct from those of the known phyla/divisions, Crenarchaeota (hyperthermophiles), Euryarchaeota, Thaumarchaeota and Korarchaeota. The unique traits suggest that this crenarchaeotic group can be considered as a novel archaeal phylum/division. Moreover, C. subterraneum harbors an ubiquitin-like protein modifier system consisting of Ub, E1, E2 and small Zn RING finger family protein...
An in-depth map of polyadenylation sites in cancer
Lin, YF; Li, ZH; Ozsolak, F; Kim, SW; Arango-Argoty, G; Liu, TT; Tenenbaum, SA; Bailey, T; Monaghan, AP; Milos, PM; John, B
Nucleic Acids Res. (2012) 40 (17): 8460-8471
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We present a comprehensive map of over 1 million polyadenylation sites and quantify their usage in major cancers and tumor cell lines using direct RNA sequencing. We built the Expression and Polyadenylation Database to enable the visualization of the polyadenylation maps in various cancers and to facilitate the discovery of novel genes and gene isoforms that are potentially important to tumorigenesis. Analyses of polyadenylation sites indicate that a large fraction (similar to 30%) of mRNAs contain alternative polyadenylation sites in their 3' untranslated regions, independent of the cell type. The shortest 3' untranslated region isoforms are preferentially upregulated in cancer tissues, genome-wide. Candidate targets of alternative polyadenylation-mediated upregulation of short isoforms include POLR2K, and signaling cascades of cell-cell and cell-extracellular matrix contact, particularly involving regulators of Rho GTPases. Polyadenylation maps also helped to improve 3' untranslated region annotations and identify candidate regulatory marks such as sequence motifs...
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