Software for measuring poly(A) tail length and 3′-end modifications using a high-throughput sequencer
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README.md

Tailseeker 3.1

(CAUTION) The current version tailseeker 3 fails to process many of HiSeq- and MiSeq-derived data due to a problem in the normalization paramter estimation. In that case, it is advised to try an older version instead.

Tailseeker is the official pipeline for TAIL-seq, which measures poly(A) tail lengths and 3′-end modifications with Illumina SBS sequencers.

DOI

Table of Contents

Analysis levels

Users can choose the extent of analysis by Tailseeker to let Tailseeker do almost everything, or just minimal tail length measurement. The options and the list of supported genomes are as followed:

Level Genomes Features
1 Any Poly(A) length measurement (≥ 5nt)
Non-A additions to poly(A) tails
PCR duplicate removal
Quality check for poly(A) length measurement
2 BDGP6 (D. melanogaster)
JGIxl91 (Xenopus laevis)
All features from level 1
Poly(A) length refinement based on genome sequence
Non-templated 3′-end tails
Alignments to genome (BAM)
3 GRCh38 (Homo sapiens)
GRCm38 (Mus musculus)
GRCz10 (Danio rerio)
WBcel235 (C. elegans)
Rnor_6.0 (Rattus norvegicus)
All features from level 2
Gene-level statistics for poly(A) length and non-templated additions
Gene-level quantifications

Running with Docker

If you have a host running Docker, you can run the tailseeker pipeline without installing any. For Apple macOS or Microsoft Windows users, this is the only easy way to run tailseeker without extensive effort. The current image is not ready for running it on multi-node HPC clusters. For those environments, you're encouraged to install the software in conventional way as described later.

Download the image and a wrapper script:

docker pull hyeshik/tailseeker:latest

curl -L http://bit.ly/tseek-docker > tseek
chmod 755 tseek

Prepare a project configuration on this page. Fill /data in “Data dir.” instead of the original paths.

Set the environment variables up:

# Point the directory holding the raw data from an Illumina sequencer
export TAILSEEKER_DATADIR=/storage/150922_M01178_0123_00000000-ACB72

# Create an empty directory for new temporary and output files
mkdir myproject    # replace myproject with your favorite name
cd myproject
cat > tailseeker.yaml
# and paste the content generated from the settings web page.
# Press Ctrl-D.

Run the pipeline:

../tseek -j

Then, the results will be located in the current directory.

When you run an analysis with references to the genome (level 2 and 3), you need to extend the Docker image to supplement a genome reference database. Build the Docker image from an empty directory like this:

curl -L http://bit.ly/Dockerfile-withref > Dockerfile
docker build -t tailseeker:GRCz10 --build-arg genome=GRCz10 .

Then, you'll need to define an environment variable before running tseek to use your own Docker image.

export TAILSEEKER_IMAGE=tailseeker:GRCz10

Non-Docker installations

Installing tailseeker

You can install tailseeker from either a source distribution or a binary package. The binary package includes many of pre-compiled external programs that were built on a x64 Linux box with Ubuntu 16.04. For the other environments, it is recommended to use the source package to install it.

Installing from a full binary bundle

Download a tarball from the download section. Extract the files into an appropriate place inside your filesystem.

wget {the download URL}
tar -xzf tailseeker-3.x.x-bundle-ubuntu_xenial.tar.gz
cd tailseeker-3.x.x-bundle-ubuntu_xenial

Install Python modules that are used in tailseeker using pip.

pip3 install --user --upgrade --requirement install/requirements.txt

Add the bin/ subdirectory of the tailseeker top directory to your PATH. To continue using tailseeker later, you will need to add this to a shell startup script such as .bashrc or .zshrc according to your login shell.

export PATH="{PATH_TO}/tailseeker-3.x.x-bundle-ubuntu_xenial/bin:$PATH"

Now, you can invoke the tailseeker pipeline with tseek command from anywhere. Proceed to generate the genome reference database.

Installing from a source package

Prerequisite software

Here're the list of software that must be installed before using tailseeker.

The toolchains and generic command line utilities can be installed if you're an administrator on a Debian or Ubuntu system:

sudo apt install whiptail pkg-config gcc wget make

You can install the Python modules in the list with this command from the top source directory:

pip3 install --user -r install/requirements.txt

Installation

A script in the top directory will check the paths of prerequisite tools and guide you to set configurations correctly. Please run:

./setup.sh

Proceed to generate the genome reference database.

Running the pipeline

Generating genome reference databases

First of all, build reference databases unless you're going to run tailseeker in genome-independent mode, or the level 1 analysis.

cd {tailseeker home}/refdb/level2 && snakemake -j -- {genome}
cd {tailseeker home}/refdb/level3 && snakemake -j -- {genome}

Type the identifier of the genome to be used in place of {genome}. List of the available genomes are shown in the first section of this tutorial.

Running the pipeline

  1. Copy the full output hierarchy from MiSeq or HiSeq to somewhere in your machine.

  2. Create an empty work directory. This is used for storing the final result files and the intermediate files which you may want to look into when something went wrong.

  3. Prepare a settings file on this page. Paste the content into a new file tailseeker.yaml inside the work directory.

  4. Run the pipeline with one of these commands:

    # In case you have an access to a job queuing system of a cluster. Change 150 to the
    # maximum number of jobs that you can put into the queue at a time.
    tseek -c qsub -j 150
    
    # In case you have a single multi-core machine,
    tseek -j

    All Snakemake options can be used in tseek, too.

  5. Take a look at the qcplots/ on the work directory. The plots there show how poly(A) length calling was accurate.

  6. Perform the downstream analyses using the output files.

Pre-built genome resource packages

Instead of building a resource database by yourself, you can download one of the pre-built packages that are updated from time to time. Here're are the pointers for those files.

Date Species Genome Download
Dec 5, 2016 Danio rerio GRCz10 DOI
Dec 5, 2016 Drosophila melanogater BDGP6 DOI
Dec 5, 2016 Caenorhabditis elegans WBcel235 DOI
Dec 15, 2016 Mus musculus GRCm38 DOI
Dec 15, 2016 Homo sapiens GRCh38 DOI
DOI
Dec 16, 2016 Xenopus laevis JGIxl91 DOI

Data outputs

Read name format (analysis level 1 only)

In an analysis level 1 output, FASTQ files are fulfilled with nucleotide sequences, quality scores as well as poly(A) tail information in read name. For the higher analysis levels, read names only include minimal identifiers. Use refined-taginfo/*.txt.gz for tailing status of each read this case.

FASTQ files are located in fastq/ in the level 1 analysis. It will contain _R5.fastq.gz and _R3.fastq.gz files for each sample. _R5 includes the sequences from the 5′-end of the RNA fragments, which is generally sequenced by read 1. _R3 is from the other end.

Each sequence entry has the identifier names in the following structure:

```
(1)   (2)      (3) (4) (5)(6)
a1101:00003863:0012:17:10:TT

(1) Tile number with an internal lane identifier.
(2) Serial number of the sequence, which is unique in the tile.
(3) Flags in hexadecimal representing data processing procedure of the read.
(4) Length of poly(A) tail.
(5) Length of additions modifications to poly(A).
(6) Post-poly(A) nucleotide additions.
```

Flags on the third field are encoded by combinations of the following bits:

Bit (decimal) Bit (hexadecimal) Description
1 0x0001 A poly(A) tail is detected
2 0x0002 Delimiter sequence is matched with one or more mismatch
4 0x0004 Have a post-poly(A) modification
8 0x0008 Poly(A) length is measured using fluorescence signal
16 0x0010 Index sequence is matched to a sample with one or more mismatches
32 0x0020 Delimiter sequence is found at a shifted position
64 0x0040 One or more cycle in 3′-read are dark (no fluorescence signal)
128 0x0080 Delimiter sequence is not found
256 0x0100 Basecalling quality of balancer region is bad
512 0x0200 Nucleotide composition of balancer region is biased
1024 0x0400 Fluorescence signal in balancer region is irregular or too dark
2048 0x0800 Number of dark cycle in read 2 exceeds the threshold
4096 0x1000 (level 2) 5′-read and 3′-read are aligned to two very distant positions in the genome
8192 0x2000 (level 2) 3′-read is aligned to a position adjacent to an expected polyadenylation site

Software licenses

The tailseeker suite

Copyright (c) 2013-2016 Hyeshik Chang

Permission is hereby granted, free of charge, to any person obtaining a copy of this software and associated documentation files (the "Software"), to deal in the Software without restriction, including without limitation the rights to use, copy, modify, merge, publish, distribute, sublicense, and/or sell copies of the Software, and to permit persons to whom the Software is furnished to do so, subject to the following conditions:

The above copyright notice and this permission notice shall be included in all copies or substantial portions of the Software.

THE SOFTWARE IS PROVIDED "AS IS", WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO THE WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE AND NONINFRINGEMENT. IN NO EVENT SHALL THE AUTHORS OR COPYRIGHT HOLDERS BE LIABLE FOR ANY CLAIM, DAMAGES OR OTHER LIABILITY, WHETHER IN AN ACTION OF CONTRACT, TORT OR OTHERWISE, ARISING FROM, OUT OF OR IN CONNECTION WITH THE SOFTWARE OR THE USE OR OTHER DEALINGS IN THE SOFTWARE.

strstr implementation from the FreeBSD libc (src/contrib/my_strstr.c)

Copyright (c) 1990, 1993 The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.

This code is derived from software contributed to Berkeley by Chris Torek.

Redistribution and use in source and binary forms, with or without modification, are permitted provided that the following conditions are met:

  1. Redistributions of source code must retain the above copyright notice, this list of conditions and the following disclaimer.
  2. Redistributions in binary form must reproduce the above copyright notice, this list of conditions and the following disclaimer in the documentation and/or other materials provided with the distribution.
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SIMD Smith-Waterman alignment library (src/contrib/ssw.c and src/contrib/ssw.h)

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Permission is hereby granted, free of charge, to any person obtaining a copy of this software and associated documentation files (the "Software"), to deal in the Software without restriction, including without limitation the rights to use, copy, modify, merge, publish, distribute, sublicense, and/or sell copies of the Software, and to permit persons to whom the Software is furnished to do so, subject to the following conditions:

The above copyright notice and this permission notice shall be included in all copies or substantial portions of the Software.

THE SOFTWARE IS PROVIDED "AS IS", WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO THE WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE AND NONINFRINGEMENT. IN NO EVENT SHALL THE AUTHORS OR COPYRIGHT HOLDERS BE LIABLE FOR ANY CLAIM, DAMAGES OR OTHER LIABILITY, WHETHER IN AN ACTION OF CONTRACT, TORT OR OTHERWISE, ARISING FROM, OUT OF OR IN CONNECTION WITH THE SOFTWARE OR THE USE OR OTHER DEALINGS IN THE SOFTWARE.

INIH configuration file parser (src/contrib/ini.c and src/contrib/ini.h)

Copyright (c) 2009, Ben Hoyt All rights reserved.

Redistribution and use in source and binary forms, with or without modification, are permitted provided that the following conditions are met:

  • Redistributions of source code must retain the above copyright notice, this list of conditions and the following disclaimer.
  • Redistributions in binary form must reproduce the above copyright notice, this list of conditions and the following disclaimer in the documentation and/or other materials provided with the distribution.
  • Neither the name of Ben Hoyt nor the names of its contributors may be used to endorse or promote products derived from this software without specific prior written permission.

THIS SOFTWARE IS PROVIDED BY BEN HOYT ''AS IS'' AND ANY EXPRESS OR IMPLIED WARRANTIES, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, THE IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY AND FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE ARE DISCLAIMED. IN NO EVENT SHALL BEN HOYT BE LIABLE FOR ANY DIRECT, INDIRECT, INCIDENTAL, SPECIAL, EXEMPLARY, OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES (INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, PROCUREMENT OF SUBSTITUTE GOODS OR SERVICES; LOSS OF USE, DATA, OR PROFITS; OR BUSINESS INTERRUPTION) HOWEVER CAUSED AND ON ANY THEORY OF LIABILITY, WHETHER IN CONTRACT, STRICT LIABILITY, OR TORT (INCLUDING NEGLIGENCE OR OTHERWISE) ARISING IN ANY WAY OUT OF THE USE OF THIS SOFTWARE, EVEN IF ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGE.