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TECtool uses mRNA and 3’ end sequencing data to identify novel terminal exons.
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README.md

TECtool (Terminal Exon Characterization tool)

Features

TECtool is a method that uses mRNA and 3’ end sequencing data to identify novel terminal exons.

  • Identify novel terminal exons
  • Infer novel transcripts
  • Annotate CDS for novel transcripts

INSTALLATION

TECtool uses genome sequence, annotation and RNA-seq data. Therefore, ~10 GB of disk space are needed for installation and testing. The installation should take about 5 to 10 minutes.

TECtool as of version 0.2 is written in Python 3. Current instructions are written for Python 3 ONLY (>=3.4 should work, but extensively tested with Python 3.6). Installation with Python 2 will not work. The recommended way to install TECtool is via the conda package manager, because it can install non Python dependencies (for example bedtools).

If you do not want to use conda to install TECtool, other options are described below.

Installation of TECtool using conda

Step 1: Download miniconda 3 installation file (if not already installed)

You can do this with one of the following options:

  • filling in the URL for the appropriate file in a browser window and saving the file

for Linux:

https://repo.continuum.io/miniconda/Miniconda3-latest-Linux-x86_64.sh

for Mac OSX:

https://repo.continuum.io/miniconda/Miniconda3-latest-MacOSX-x86_64.sh
  • using wget:

for Linux:

wget https://repo.continuum.io/miniconda/Miniconda3-latest-Linux-x86_64.sh

for Mac OSX:

wget https://repo.continuum.io/miniconda/Miniconda3-latest-MacOSX-x86_64.sh
  • using curl:

for Linux:

curl https://repo.continuum.io/miniconda/Miniconda3-latest-Linux-x86_64.sh -o Miniconda3-latest-Linux-x86_64.sh

for Mac OSX:

curl https://repo.continuum.io/miniconda/Miniconda3-latest-MacOSX-x86_64.sh -o Miniconda3-latest-MacOSX-x86_64.sh

Step 2: Install miniconda 3

Make sure that you run the 'bash' shell and execute:

for Linux:

bash Miniconda3-latest-Linux-x86_64.sh

for Mac OSX:

bash Miniconda3-latest-MacOSX-x86_64.sh

Step 3: Create a new conda environment

Create a new conda environment

conda create --name TECtool --channel bioconda --channel conda-forge --channel fgypas tectool

Activate the virtual environment

source activate TECtool

Check the installation and options for the tool

tectool --help

If installation was sucessfull, you can start testing (see section Recommended files for testing)

Step 3 (alternative 1): Install tectool in an existing environment or globally

Install tectool in an existing conda environment or globally

conda install --channel bioconda --channel conda-forge --channel fgypas tectool

Check the installation and options for the tool

tectool --help

If installation was sucessfull, you can start testing (see section Recommended files for testing)

Step 3 (alternative 2): Create a new conda environment and install the dependencies manually

Create a new conda environment that only contains python 3

conda create --name TECtool --channel bioconda python=3.6.2

Activate the virtual environment

source activate TECtool

Install dependencies one by one

conda install --channel bioconda htseq==0.9.1
conda install --channel bioconda bedtools==2.26.0
conda install --channel bioconda pybedtools==0.7.10
conda install --channel conda-forge bzip2
conda install --channel bioconda pyfasta==0.5.2
conda install --channel coda-forge scikit-learn==0.19.0
conda install --channel conda-forge progress==1.3
conda install --channel fgypas tectool

Check the installation and options for the tool

tectool --help

If installation was sucessfull, you can start testing (see section Recommended files for testing)

Installation of TECtool without conda

For users that do not want to use conda, but have a python installation (3.4 and above). Note: Normally venv (https://docs.python.org/3/library/venv.html) should be pre-installed in Python 3. Some distributions separate it to a different package, such as python3-venv on Ubuntu/Debian, so users need to additionally install it before running the following command.

Create a virtual environment with venv named envTECtool.

python -m venv envTECtool

Activate the virtual environment

source envTECtool/bin/activate

In the activated virtual environment you might need to upgrade pip

pip install --upgrade pip

Clone the TECtool repository

git clone https://github.com/zavolanlab/TECtool.git

Now you should see a direcroty for the virtual environment (envTECtool) and one directory for the TECtool package (TECtool)

Enter the cloned directory

cd TECtool

Important Note: The requirements that will be installed include only Python modules. Users should additionally install bedtools version 2.26 in their system. For installation instruction please see here: http://bedtools.readthedocs.io/en/latest/content/quick-start.html#install-bedtools. TECtool is not checking if the correct version of bedtools is installed and this might lead to run-time errors.

Install dependencies with

pip install -r requirements.txt

You can check the version of bedtools by typing

bedtools --version

Install TECtool

python setup.py install

Check the installation and options for the tool

tectool --help

Note: TECtool will be available only when the virtual environment is active.

If installation was sucessfull, you can start testing (see section Recommended files for testing)

Docker

A docker image is also available with all dependencies installed. Users should have docker installed in their system with root access.

Pull the docker image

sudo docker pull fgypas/tectool:0.4

Start and enter the container

sudo docker run -it fgypas/tectool:0.4 bash

If installation was sucessfull, you can start testing (see section Recommended files for testing)

TECtool options

The following options are available and should be set by the user:

  • --annotation FILE: Annotation file in ENSEMBL GTF format (tested with ENSEMBL v87) [REQUIRED]. Other GTF formats are currently not supported.

  • --polyasites FILE: Bed file that contains polya sites [REQUIRED].

  • --genome FILE: Genome in fasta format [REQUIRED]. Note for versions <0.3: The file should have the same chromosome names (header lines) as the ones specified in the gtf file. For example if the gtf file has chromosome 1 denoted by "1", then the sequence in the fasta file should have a description line of the form ">1". No white spaces or trailing text should be included.

  • --bam FILE: The BAM file that should be analysed. [REQUIRED] Note that the BAM file should be sorted by coordinates. An index file should be also present in the same directory.

  • --sequencing_direction SEQUENCING_DIRECTION: If the data is generated by a stranded protocol, reads should be provided in the forward orientation and set the option to 'forward'. If the reads were generated by an unstranded protocol select 'unstranded'. [default=unstranded]

  • --minimum_spliced_reads_for_cryptic_exon_start_site MINIMUM_SPLICED_READS_FOR_CRYPTIC_EXON_START_SITE: Minimum number of spliced reads required to consider the start site of a novel exon. [default=5]

  • --min_region_overlap MIN_REGION_OVERLAP: Minimum number of bases that a read should share with an exon to be considered towards feature calculations for the exon (It will be suppressed in future versions). [default=10]

  • --max_splice_fuzziness MAX_SPLICE_FUZZINESS: Maximum number of bases by which the 5' boundary of a candidate novel exon is allowed to vary, considering all reads that splice into that candidate exon (It will be suppressed in future versions). [default=0]

  • --drop_manually_selected_features: Select features for the exon classification from scratch, using a greedy approach. Default is to include a minimum set of features (['ReadsOUTvsIN_all', 'entropy_efficiency']), which we found most informative. [default=False]

  • --drop_intronic_polya_sites_of_overlapping_genes: Ignore intronic polya sites that occur in regions of overlap between genes. [default=False]

  • --use_precalculated_training_set: Use precalculated training set (skips the generation of training and validation sets). This option should be provided in combination with the option: --training_set_directory. [default=False]

  • --training_set_directory DIRECTORY: Training set directory created by another TECtool run using the same annotation files. This option should be provided in combination with the option: --use_precalculated_training_set, otherwise it is ignored. [No default option provided]

  • --output_dir DIRECTORY: The path to the output directory. [default="." (current working directory)]

  • --verbose Be Verbose

  • --version show program's version number and exit

  • --help show help message and exit

Input files

Input files

  • A file containing all chromosomes in fasta format. Important note for versions <0.3:: The file should have the same chromosome names (header lines) as the ones specified in the gtf file. For example if the gtf file has chromosome 1 annotated as "1", then the fasta should have a header called ">1". No white spaces or trailing text should be included.
  • A file with the corresponding annotation in GTF format. Important note: Currently only gtf files in ENSEMBL (tested with ENSEMBL v87).
  • A file with genome coordinates of 3’ end processing sites in BED format.
  • A file containing spliced alignments of mRNA-seq reads to the corresponding genome (in BAM format, sorted by coordinates and indexed) (tested with STAR aligner).

Output files

The output of TECtool:

  • An augmented annotation file in gtf format named enriched_annotation.gtf. The gtf file contains genes, transcripts, exons, CDS, START and STOP lines.
  • A file containing the novel terminal exons named classified_as_terminal_with_probabilities.tsv: The table contains the terminal exon region, the gene id, the features that were used, the probability that this region is terminal (terminal_probability), the probability that this region is intermediate (intermediate_probability), the probability that the region is background (background_probability), the type that was selected (terminal/intermediate/background) and the genomic coordinates of the region (chromosome, start, end, strand).
  • A file containing the root and the novel transcript ids
  • When TECtool is run without the options --use_precalculated_training_set --training_set_directory a directory called training_data is generated. This can be used as input when the options the options --use_precalculated_training_set --training_set_directory are provided.

Plot novel exons

A supplementary script (written in R) is also provided that uses one of the outputs of TECtool and visualizes the novel terminal exons. The script is called plot_novel_exons.R and is available in the scripts directory of TECtool. In order to run it users should have R installed (>=3.4) (tested with R 3.4.1 on CentOS 7.3) with the following packages: optparse, rtracklayer, Gviz, biomaRt and GenomicFeatures.

Note for users that installed tectool via conda: The default environment for running tectool does not contain any R installation. In order to run the plotting script please create a new conda environment that contains both TECtool and the R dependencies. You can do this as following:

conda create --name TECtool_plot_novel_exons --channel bioconda --channel conda-forge --channel r --channel fgypas r-base=3.4.1 bioconductor-gviz r-optparse openblas tectool

Note: that this is a time consuming step and many packages are installed.

Acivate the virtual environment

source activate TECtool_plot_novel_exons

The following options are available in the script:

  • --gtf: GTF file with annotated transcripts
  • --polyasites: BED file with polya sites
  • --bam: Alignment file in BAM format
  • --tectool_exons: TECtool exons file in tsv format. Output of TECtool (classified_as_terminal_with_probabilities.tsv).
  • --output_dir: Output directory
  • --help: Show help message
  • --verbose: Be Verbose

Recommended files for testing

Using the recommended files testing TECtool takes around 10 minutes run time on a desktop computer (using one core).

Download the test data

wget http://tectool.unibas.ch/data/test_data.tar.gz

Uncompress the files

tar xzvf test_data.tar.gz

Enter the directory

cd test_data

Run TECtool with the following options

tectool \
--annotation Homo_sapiens.GRCh38.87.chr.support_level_5.correct_gene_coordinates.chr1.14.22.X.16.gtf \
--polyasites polya_sites.merged.anno.hg38.ENSEMBL.chr1.14.22.X.16.bed \
--bam GSM1502499_RNA_seq_control_rep2.chr22.bam \
--genome Homo_sapiens.GRCh38.dna_sm.primary_assembly.fixed.fa \
--output_dir results

Note: Some warnings will appear because the dataset that we use is small.

In order to test the vizualization script please first check the section Plot novel exons (for proper installation of R dependencies) and then run the following example:

plot_novel_exons.R \
--gtf Homo_sapiens.GRCh38.87.chr.support_level_5.correct_gene_coordinates.chr1.14.22.X.16.gtf \
--polyasites polya_sites.merged.anno.hg38.ENSEMBL.chr1.14.22.X.16.bed \
--bam GSM1502499_RNA_seq_control_rep2.chr22.bam \
--tectool_exons results/classified_as_terminal_with_probabilities.tsv \
--output_dir plots

In the output directory a pdf file is generated with the identified novel terminal exons. An example can be found here with two novel terminal exons: http://tectool.unibas.ch/data/example_plots.pdf . The novel exons are marked with red boxes. The closest upstream and downstream exons are shown in the plot.

Note for docker: You can copy files from a docker container to your host OS using the command.

docker cp <container id>:/path/to/file/in/container /path/to/file/in/host/os

Annotation files

In the following links you can find genome files for GRCh38 and GRCm38, their corresponding poly(A) sites and ENSEMBL annotation files wiht support level 1 and support level 5.

Note: The script tectool_filter_gtf_by_transcript_support_level in the scritps directory of TECtool takes as input a gtf file and keeps only the transcripts with the user specified support level. You can run it as following:

tectool_filter_gtf_by_transcript_support_level \
--gtf <ORIGINAL GTF FILE> \
--out <FILTERED GTF FILE> \
--support_level <Transcript support level to choose [1,2,3,4,5] \
--fix_gene_coordinates

Licence and documentation

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