Short interspersed nuclear elements (SINEs) are a widespread type of small transposable element (TE). With increasing evidence for their impact on gene function and genome evolution in plants, accurate genome-scale SINE annotation becomes a fundamental step for studying the regulatory roles of SINEs and their relationship with other components in the genomes. Despite the overall promising progress made in TE annotation, SINE annotation remains a major challenge. Unlike some other TEs, SINEs are short and heterogeneous, and they usually lack well-conserved sequence or structural features. Thus, current SINE annotation tools have either low sensitivity or high false discovery rates. Given the demand and challenges, we aimed to provide a more accurate and efficient SINE annotation tool for plant genomes. The pipeline starts with maximizing the pool of SINE candidates via profile hidden Markov model-based homology search and de novo SINE search using structural features. Then, it excludes the false positives by integrating all known features of SINEs and the features of other types of TEs that can often be misannotated as SINEs. As a result, the pipeline substantially improves the tradeoff between sensitivity and accuracy, with both values close to or over 90%. We tested our tool in Arabidopsis thaliana and rice (Oryza sativa), and the results show that our tool competes favorably against existing SINE annotation tools. The simplicity and effectiveness of this tool would potentially be useful for generating more accurate SINE annotations for other plant species. The pipeline is freely available at https://github.com/yangli557/AnnoSINE.more » « less
- Award ID(s):
- NSF-PAR ID:
- Publisher / Repository:
- Oxford University Press
- Date Published:
- Journal Name:
- Plant Physiology
- Medium: X Size: p. 955-970
- ["p. 955-970"]
- Sponsoring Org:
- National Science Foundation
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INTRODUCTION Transposable elements (TEs), repeat expansions, and repeat-mediated structural rearrangements play key roles in chromosome structure and species evolution, contribute to human genetic variation, and substantially influence human health through copy number variants, structural variants, insertions, deletions, and alterations to gene transcription and splicing. Despite their formative role in genome stability, repetitive regions have been relegated to gaps and collapsed regions in human genome reference GRCh38 owing to the technological limitations during its development. The lack of linear sequence in these regions, particularly in centromeres, resulted in the inability to fully explore the repeat content of the human genome in the context of both local and regional chromosomal environments. RATIONALE Long-read sequencing supported the complete, telomere-to-telomere (T2T) assembly of the pseudo-haploid human cell line CHM13. This resource affords a genome-scale assessment of all human repetitive sequences, including TEs and previously unknown repeats and satellites, both within and outside of gaps and collapsed regions. Additionally, a complete genome enables the opportunity to explore the epigenetic and transcriptional profiles of these elements that are fundamental to our understanding of chromosome structure, function, and evolution. Comparative analyses reveal modes of repeat divergence, evolution, and expansion or contraction with locus-level resolution. RESULTS We implemented a comprehensive repeat annotation workflow using previously known human repeats and de novo repeat modeling followed by manual curation, including assessing overlaps with gene annotations, segmental duplications, tandem repeats, and annotated repeats. Using this method, we developed an updated catalog of human repetitive sequences and refined previous repeat annotations. We discovered 43 previously unknown repeats and repeat variants and characterized 19 complex, composite repetitive structures, which often carry genes, across T2T-CHM13. Using precision nuclear run-on sequencing (PRO-seq) and CpG methylated sites generated from Oxford Nanopore Technologies long-read sequencing data, we assessed RNA polymerase engagement across retroelements genome-wide, revealing correlations between nascent transcription, sequence divergence, CpG density, and methylation. These analyses were extended to evaluate RNA polymerase occupancy for all repeats, including high-density satellite repeats that reside in previously inaccessible centromeric regions of all human chromosomes. Moreover, using both mapping-dependent and mapping-independent approaches across early developmental stages and a complete cell cycle time series, we found that engaged RNA polymerase across satellites is low; in contrast, TE transcription is abundant and serves as a boundary for changes in CpG methylation and centromere substructure. Together, these data reveal the dynamic relationship between transcriptionally active retroelement subclasses and DNA methylation, as well as potential mechanisms for the derivation and evolution of new repeat families and composite elements. Focusing on the emerging T2T-level assembly of the HG002 X chromosome, we reveal that a high level of repeat variation likely exists across the human population, including composite element copy numbers that affect gene copy number. Additionally, we highlight the impact of repeats on the structural diversity of the genome, revealing repeat expansions with extreme copy number differences between humans and primates while also providing high-confidence annotations of retroelement transduction events. CONCLUSION The comprehensive repeat annotations and updated repeat models described herein serve as a resource for expanding the compendium of human genome sequences and reveal the impact of specific repeats on the human genome. In developing this resource, we provide a methodological framework for assessing repeat variation within and between human genomes. The exhaustive assessment of the transcriptional landscape of repeats, at both the genome scale and locally, such as within centromeres, sets the stage for functional studies to disentangle the role transcription plays in the mechanisms essential for genome stability and chromosome segregation. Finally, our work demonstrates the need to increase efforts toward achieving T2T-level assemblies for nonhuman primates and other species to fully understand the complexity and impact of repeat-derived genomic innovations that define primate lineages, including humans. Telomere-to-telomere assembly of CHM13 supports repeat annotations and discoveries. The human reference T2T-CHM13 filled gaps and corrected collapsed regions (triangles) in GRCh38. Combining long read–based methylation calls, PRO-seq, and multilevel computational methods, we provide a compendium of human repeats, define retroelement expression and methylation profiles, and delineate locus-specific sites of nascent transcription genome-wide, including previously inaccessible centromeres. SINE, short interspersed element; SVA, SINE–variable number tandem repeat– Alu ; LINE, long interspersed element; LTR, long terminal repeat; TSS, transcription start site; pA, xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx.more » « less
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Transposable elements (TEs) are ubiquitous in genomes and many remain active. TEs comprise an important fraction of the transcriptomes with potential effects on the host genome, either by generating deleterious mutations or promoting evolutionary novelties. However, their functional study is limited by the difficulty in their identification and quantification, particularly in non-model organisms.
We developed a new pipeline [explore active transposable elements (ExplorATE)] implemented in R and bash that allows the quantification of active TEs in both model and non-model organisms. ExplorATE creates TE-specific indexes and uses the Selective Alignment (SA) to filter out co-transcribed transposons within genes based on alignment scores. Moreover, our software incorporates a Wicker-like criteria to refine a set of target TEs and avoid spurious mapping. Based on simulated and real data, we show that the SA strategy adopted by ExplorATE achieved better estimates of non-co-transcribed elements than other available alignment-based or mapping-based software. ExplorATE results showed high congruence with alignment-based tools with and without a reference genome, yet ExplorATE required less execution time. Likewise, ExplorATE expands and complements most previous TE analyses by incorporating the co-transcription and multi-mapping effects during quantification, and provides a seamless integration with other downstream tools within the R environment.
Availability and implementation
Source code is available at https://github.com/FemeniasM/ExplorATEproject and https://github.com/FemeniasM/ExplorATE_shell_script. Data available on request.
Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.
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null (Ed.)Transposable elements (TEs) are mobile elements capable of introducing genetic changes rapidly. Their importance has been documented in many biological processes, such as introducing genetic instability, altering patterns of gene expression, and accelerating genome evolution. Increasing appreciation of TEs has resulted in a growing number of bioinformatics software to identify insertion events. However, the application of existing tools is limited by either narrow-focused design of the package, too many dependencies on other tools, or prior knowledge required as input files that may not be readily available to all users. Here, we reported a simple pipeline, TEfinder, developed for the detection of new TE insertions with minimal software and input file dependencies. The external software requirements are BEDTools, SAMtools, and Picard. Necessary input files include the reference genome sequence in FASTA format, an alignment file from paired-end reads, existing TEs in GTF format, and a text file of TE names. We tested TEfinder among several evolving populations of Fusarium oxysporum generated through a short-term adaptation study. Our results demonstrate that this easy-to-use tool can effectively detect new TE insertion events, making it accessible and practical for TE analysis.more » « less