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A Global View of Gene Activity and Alternative Splicing by Deep Sequencing of the Human Transcriptome

Science  15 Aug 2008:
Vol. 321, Issue 5891, pp. 956-960
DOI: 10.1126/science.1160342

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Abstract

The functional complexity of the human transcriptome is not yet fully elucidated. We report a high-throughput sequence of the human transcriptome from a human embryonic kidney and a B cell line. We used shotgun sequencing of transcripts to generate randomly distributed reads. Of these, 50% mapped to unique genomic locations, of which 80% corresponded to known exons. We found that 66% of the polyadenylated transcriptome mapped to known genes and 34% to nonannotated genomic regions. On the basis of known transcripts, RNA-Seq can detect 25% more genes than can microarrays. A global survey of messenger RNA splicing events identified 94,241 splice junctions (4096 of which were previously unidentified) and showed that exon skipping is the most prevalent form of alternative splicing.

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