Identification of Genomic Alterations Through Multilevel DNA Structural Analysis
Current methods to identify genomic alterations using whole-genome sequencing (WGS) data are often limited to single nucleotide polymorphisms and insertions and deletions that are less than 10 bp in length. These limitations are largely due to challenges in accurately mapping short sequencing reads that significantly diverge from the reference genome. Newer sequencing-based methods have been developed to define and characterize larger DNA structural elements. This is achieved by enriching for and sequencing regions of the genome that contain a specific element, followed by identifying genomic regions with high densities of mapped short reads that designate the location of these elements. This process essentially aggregates short read data into larger structural units for further characterization. Here, we describe protocols for identifying various types of genomic alterations using differential analysis of these structural units. We focus on changes in DNA accessibility, protein–DNA interactions, and chromosomal contacts as measured by ATAC-Seq, ChIP-Seq, and Hi-C respectively. As many protocols have been published describing the generation and processing of these data, we focus on simple methods that can be used to identify mutations in these data, and can be executed by someone with limited computational expertise.
Key wordsMutation detection DNA organization Chromatin DNA accessibility DNA–protein interactions ChIP-Seq ATAC-Seq Hi-C
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