Direct RNA nanopore sequencing of full-length coronavirus genomes provides novel insights into structural variants and enables modification analysis
Posted 30 Nov 2018
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/483693 (published DOI: 10.1101/gr.247064.118)
Posted 30 Nov 2018
Sequence analyses of RNA virus genomes remain challenging due to the exceptional genetic plasticity of these viruses. Because of high mutation and recombination rates, genome replication by viral RNA-dependent RNA polymerases leads to populations of closely related viruses, so-called ‘quasispecies’. Standard (short-read) sequencing technologies are ill-suited to reconstruct large numbers of full-length haplotypes of (i) RNA virus genomes and (ii) subgenome-length (sg) RNAs comprised of noncontiguous genome regions. Here, we used a full-length, direct RNA sequencing (DRS) approach based on nanopores to characterize viral RNAs produced in cells infected with a human coronavirus. Using DRS, we were able to map the longest (∼26 kb) contiguous read to the viral reference genome. By combining Illumina and nanopore sequencing, we reconstructed a highly accurate consensus sequence of the human coronavirus (HCoV) 229E genome (27.3 kb). Furthermore, using long reads that did not require an assembly step, we were able to identify, in infected cells, diverse and novel HCoV-229E sg RNAs that remain to be characterized. Also, the DRS approach, which circumvents reverse transcription and amplification of RNA, allowed us to detect methylation sites in viral RNAs. Our work paves the way for haplotype-based analyses of viral quasispecies by demonstrating the feasibility of intra-sample haplotype separation. Even though several technical challenges remain to be addressed to exploit the potential of the nanopore technology fully, our work illustrates that direct RNA sequencing may significantly advance genomic studies of complex virus populations, including predictions on long-range interactions in individual full-length viral RNA haplotypes.
- Downloaded 3,761 times
- Download rankings, all-time:
- Site-wide: 2,242 out of 116,126
- In genomics: 303 out of 6,424
- Year to date:
- Site-wide: 4,717 out of 116,126
- Since beginning of last month:
- Site-wide: 6,958 out of 116,126
Downloads over time
Distribution of downloads per paper, site-wide
- 18 Dec 2019: We're pleased to announce PanLingua, a new tool that enables you to search for machine-translated bioRxiv preprints using more than 100 different languages.
- 21 May 2019: PLOS Biology has published a community page about Rxivist.org and its design.
- 10 May 2019: The paper analyzing the Rxivist dataset has been published at eLife.
- 1 Mar 2019: We now have summary statistics about bioRxiv downloads and submissions.
- 8 Feb 2019: Data from Altmetric is now available on the Rxivist details page for every preprint. Look for the "donut" under the download metrics.
- 30 Jan 2019: preLights has featured the Rxivist preprint and written about our findings.
- 22 Jan 2019: Nature just published an article about Rxivist and our data.
- 13 Jan 2019: The Rxivist preprint is live!