Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

New guideline for DNA sequences could prevent erroneous data

05.11.2012
DNA sequence data is an indispensable source of research information in biology. But not all data are reliable.
Almost 10% of all fungal DNA sequences are, for example, incorrectly identified to species level. A international team of researchers, with it’s core at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden, has therefore prepared a guide to assist the scientific community in the quality control process.

A new scientific study sees the researchers putting together a number of guidelines to help other researchers to ensure a high level of quality among their newly generated DNA sequences.

Detailed studies
DNA sequences make it possible to study biological samples and environments at a level of detail that traditional tools, such as microscopes, cannot provide. It is, for example, possible to investigate what species are present in seemingly barren substrates such as soil and seawater. Such studies often reveal an astonishing and hitherto unimagined diversity, and biology has made major advances as the use of DNA-based methods has become more widespread.

Quality varies
But as with many other sources of information, DNA sequences vary in quality and reliability. Several studies have found considerable quality problems in existing DNA sequence databases.

To verify ones DNA Sequence dataset for basic quality and authenticity has thus become an important part of biological research.

“Many researchers perceive quality control as difficult,” says Henrik Nilsson at the University of Gothenburg. “There are, quite simply, no guidelines that you can hand out to new or established researchers so that everyone is using the same approach. Which is why there are major differences in how, and to what extent, quality control is carried out in the research community.”

Nilsson is the lead author of a new scientific article on DNA sequence quality which has been published in the open-access journal MycoKeys.

Cumbersome software
One complication is that the software that is available to carry out parts of the quality control is cumbersome and often requires considerable computer capacity. The research group feels that it is not appropriate to require all biologists to have access to and be able to use such complex computer systems.

This is why they have written an article describing how quality control can be carried out manually without any tools beyond an Internet browser.

A guide that will help many
The article features a number of principles and observations on DNA sequences at different quality stages. Although the guidelines focus on fungi, where DNA sequences have had a particularly significant impact as a research instrument, they are general and can be used for most genes and groups of organisms.

The guidelines relate to traditional DNA sequencing as it is used in systematics, taxonomy and ecology.

The researchers hope that it will help readers to improve their DNA sequences and so halt the trend of increasing noise in the public DNA sequence databases.

Contact:
Henrik Nilsson, researcher, Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences
Tel: +46 (0)31 786 2623, e-mail: henrik.nilsson@bioenv.gu.se

Carina Eliasson | idw
Further information:
http://www.gu.se
http://dx.doi.org/10.3897/mycokeys.4.3606

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht The birth of a new protein
20.10.2017 | University of Arizona

nachricht Building New Moss Factories
20.10.2017 | Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg im Breisgau

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Neutron star merger directly observed for the first time

University of Maryland researchers contribute to historic detection of gravitational waves and light created by event

On August 17, 2017, at 12:41:04 UTC, scientists made the first direct observation of a merger between two neutron stars--the dense, collapsed cores that remain...

Im Focus: Breaking: the first light from two neutron stars merging

Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source. The event, caused by two neutron stars colliding and merging together, was dubbed GW170817 because it sent ripples through space-time that reached Earth on 2017 August 17. Around the world, hundreds of excited astronomers mobilized quickly and were able to observe the event using numerous telescopes, providing a wealth of new data.

Previous detections of gravitational waves have all involved the merger of two black holes, a feat that won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics earlier this month....

Im Focus: Smart sensors for efficient processes

Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).

When quality testing uses time-consuming destructive test methods, it can result in enormous costs due to damaging or destroying the products. And given that...

Im Focus: Cold molecules on collision course

Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.

How do chemical reactions proceed at extremely low temperatures? The answer requires the investigation of molecular samples that are cold, dense, and slow at...

Im Focus: Shrinking the proton again!

Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, using high precision laser spectroscopy of atomic hydrogen, confirm the surprisingly small value of the proton radius determined from muonic hydrogen.

It was one of the breakthroughs of the year 2010: Laser spectroscopy of muonic hydrogen resulted in a value for the proton charge radius that was significantly...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ASEAN Member States discuss the future role of renewable energy

17.10.2017 | Event News

World Health Summit 2017: International experts set the course for the future of Global Health

10.10.2017 | Event News

Climate Engineering Conference 2017 Opens in Berlin

10.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Terahertz spectroscopy goes nano

20.10.2017 | Information Technology

Strange but true: Turning a material upside down can sometimes make it softer

20.10.2017 | Materials Sciences

NRL clarifies valley polarization for electronic and optoelectronic technologies

20.10.2017 | Interdisciplinary Research

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>