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Sub-Cluster Identification through Semi-Supervised Optimization of Rare-Cell Silhouettes (SCISSORS) in Single-Cell RNA-Sequencing

Thu, 27/07/2023 - 5:30am
AbstractMotivationSingle-cell RNA-sequencing (scRNA-seq) has enabled the molecular profiling of thousands to millions of cells simultaneously in biologically heterogenous samples. Currently, common practice in scRNA-seq is to determine cell type labels through unsupervised clustering and the examination of cluster-specific genes. However, even small differences in analysis and parameter choosing can greatly alter clustering results and thus impose great influence on which cell types are identified. Existing methods largely focus on determining the optimal number of robust clusters, which can be problematic for identifying cells of extremely low abundance due to their subtle contributions towards overall patterns of gene expression.ResultsHere we present a carefully designed framework, SCISSORS, which accurately profiles subclusters within broad cluster(s) for the identification of rare cell types in scRNA-seq data. SCISSORS employs silhouette scoring for the estimation of heterogeneity of clusters and reveals rare cells in heterogenous clusters by a multi-step semi-supervised reclustering process. Additionally, SCISSORS provides a method for the identification of marker genes of high specificity to the cell type. SCISSORS is wrapped around the popular Seurat R package and can be easily integrated into existing Seurat pipelines.AvailabilitySCISSORS, including source code and vignettes for example datasets, is freely available at https://github.com/jr-leary7/SCISSORS.Supplementary informationSupplementary dataSupplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.
Categories: Bioinformatics Trends

quickBAM: a parallelized BAM file access API for high throughput sequence analysis informatics

Thu, 27/07/2023 - 5:30am
AbstractMotivationIn time-critical clinical settings, such as precision medicine, genomic data needs to be processed as fast as possible to arrive at data-informed treatment decisions in a timely fashion. While sequencing throughput has dramatically increased over the past decade, bioinformatics analysis throughput has not been able to keep up with the pace of computer hardware improvement, and consequently has now turned into the primary bottleneck. Modern computer hardware today is capable of much higher performance than current genomic informatics algorithms can typically utilize, therefore presenting opportunities for significant improvement of performance. Accessing the raw sequencing data from BAM files, for example, is a necessary and time-consuming step in nearly all sequence analysis tools, however existing programming libraries for BAM access do not take full advantage of the parallel input/output capabilities of storage devices.ResultsIn an effort to stimulate the development of a new generation of faster sequence analysis tools, We developed quickBAM, a software library to accelerate sequencing data access by exploiting the parallelism in commodity storage hardware currently widely available. We demonstrate that analysis software ported to quickBAM consistently outperforms their current versions, in some cases finishing an analysis in under 3 minutes while the original version took 1.5 hours, using the same storage solution.AvailabilityOpen source and freely available at https://gitlab.com/yiq/quickbam/, we envision that quickBAM will enable a new generation of high performance informatics tools, either directly boosting their performance if they are currently data-access bottlenecked, or allow data-access to keep up with further optimizations in algorithms and compute techniques.Supplementary informationSupplementary dataSupplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.
Categories: Bioinformatics Trends

simCAS: an embedding-based method for simulating single-cell chromatin accessibility sequencing data

Wed, 26/07/2023 - 5:30am
AbstractMotivationSingle-cell chromatin accessibility sequencing (scCAS) technology provides an epigenomic perspective to characterize gene regulatory mechanisms at single-cell resolution. With an increasing number of computational methods proposed for analyzing scCAS data, a powerful simulation framework is desirable for evaluation and validation of these methods. However, existing simulators generate synthetic data by sampling reads from real data or mimicking existing cell states, which is inadequate to provide credible ground-truth labels for method evaluation.ResultsWe present simCAS, an embedding-based simulator, for generating high-fidelity scCAS data from both cell-wise and peak-wise embeddings. We demonstrate simCAS outperforms existing simulators in resembling real data and show that simCAS can generate cells of different states with user-defined cell populations and differentiation trajectories. Additionally, simCAS can simulate data from different batches and encode user-specified interactions of chromatin regions in the synthetic data, which provides ground-truth labels more than cell states. We systematically demonstrate that simCAS facilitates the benchmarking of four core tasks in downstream analysis: cell clustering, trajectory inference, data integration, and cis-regulatory interaction inference. We anticipate simCAS will be a reliable and flexible simulator for evaluating the ongoing computational methods applied on scCAS data.AvailabilitysimCAS is freely available at https://github.com/Chen-Li-17/simCAS.Supplementary informationSupplementary dataSupplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.
Categories: Bioinformatics Trends

Chaining for Accurate Alignment of Erroneous Long Reads to Acyclic Variation Graphs

Wed, 26/07/2023 - 5:30am
AbstractMotivationAligning reads to a variation graph is a standard task in pangenomics, with downstream applications such as improving variant calling. While the vg toolkit (Garrison et al., 2018) is a popular aligner of short reads, GraphAligner (Rautiainen and Marschall, 2020) is the state-of-the-art aligner of erroneous long reads. GraphAligner works by finding candidate read occurrences based on individually extending the best seeds of the read in the variation graph. However, a more principled approach recognized in the community is to co-linearly chain multiple seeds.ResultsWe present a new algorithm to co-linearly chain a set of seeds in a string labeled acyclic graph, together with the first efficient implementation of such a co-linear chaining algorithm into a new aligner of erroneous long reads to acyclic variation graphs, GraphChainer. We run experiments aligning real and simulated PacBio CLR reads with average error rates 15% and 5%. Compared to GraphAligner, GraphChainer aligns 12% to 17% more reads, and 21% to 28% more total read length, on real PacBio CLR reads from human chromosomes 1, 22 and the whole human pangenome. On both simulated and real data, GraphChainer aligns between 95% and 99% of all reads, and of total read length. We also show that minigraph (Li et al., 2020) and minichain (Chandra and Jain, 2023) obtain an accuracy of less than 60% on this setting.AvailabilityGraphChainer is freely available at https://github.com/algbio/GraphChainer. The datasets and evaluation pipeline can be reached from the previous address.Supplementary informationSupplementary dataSupplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.
Categories: Bioinformatics Trends



September 2023