Using MinION sequencing to identify transcript variation between different life cycle stages of the parasitic nematode Strongyloides ratti.


D Lastik1; V Hunt1
1 University of Bath, UK


Most of our knowledge about mRNA transcripts in parasites relies on short read sequencing. Often, information about alternatively spliced transcripts, the UTR regions and polyA tail are missed using this method and have to be predicted computationally. Using nanopore sequencing, we have identified full-length transcripts for the gastrointestinal parasite Strongyloides ratti. We obtained up to 4 million reads per sequencing run with a minimum of 77% of reads representing full-length transcripts. Together, we identified over 5000 novel isoforms and 2000 novel loci which potentially represent previously undiscovered genes.  Full length transcripts were obtained for several different S. ratti life cycle stages including genetically identical parasitic and free-living adults. This new data can help us understand the role of alternative spliced isoforms in parasitism and understand the role of alternatively spliced transcripts and variable UTR length in gene regulation. 

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