Motivation: Genomic instability in cancer leads to abnormal genome copy number alterations (CNA) that are associated with the development and behavior of tumors. Advances in microarray technology have allowed for greater resolution in detection of DNA copy number changes (amplifications or deletions) across the genome. However, the increase in number of measured signals and accompanying noise from the array probes present a challenge in accurate and fast identification of breakpoints that define CNA. This article proposes a novel detection technique that exploits the use of piece wise constant (PWC) vectors to represent genome copy number and sparse Bayesian learning (SBL) to detect CNA breakpoints.
Methods: First, a compact linear algebra representation for the genome copy number is developed from normalized probe intensities. Second, SBL is applied and optimized to infer locations where copy number changes occur. Third, a backward elimination (BE) procedure is used to rank the inferred breakpoints; and a cut-off point can be efficiently adjusted in this procedure to control for the false discovery rate (FDR).
Results: The performance of our algorithm is evaluated using simulated and real genome datasets and compared to other existing techniques. Our approach achieves the highest accuracy and lowest FDR while improving computational speed by several orders of magnitude. The proposed algorithm has been developed into a free standing software application (GADA, Genome Alteration Detection Algorithm).
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Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.
DNA copy number aberration (CNA) is very important in the pathogenesis of tumors and other diseases. For example, CNAs may result in suppression of anti-oncogenes and activation of oncogenes, which would cause certain types of cancers. High density single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) array data is widely used for the CNA detection. However, it is nontrivial to detect the CNA automatically because the signals obtained from high density SNP arrays often have low signal-to-noise ratio (SNR), which might be caused by whole genome amplification, mixtures of normal and tumor cells, experimental noise or other technical limitations. With the reduction in SNR, many false CNA regions are often detected and the true CNA regions are missed. Thus, more sophisticated statistical models are needed to make the CNAs detection, using the low SNR signals, more robust and reliable.
This paper presents a conditional random pattern (CRP) model for CNA detection where much contextual cues are explored to suppress the noise and improve CNA detection accuracy. Both simulated and the real data are used to evaluate the proposed model, and the validation results show that the CRP model is more robust and reliable in the presence of noise for CNA detection using high density SNP array data, compared to a number of widely used software packages.
The proposed conditional random pattern (CRP) model could effectively detect the CNA regions in the presence of noise.
Somatic copy number alteration (CNA) is a common phenomenon in cancer genome. Distinguishing significant consensus events (SCEs) from random background CNAs in a set of subjects has been proven to be a valuable tool to study cancer. In order to identify SCEs with an acceptable type I error rate, better computational approaches should be developed based on reasonable statistics and null distributions. In this article, we propose a new approach named TAGCNA for identifying SCEs in somatic CNAs that may encompass cancer driver genes. TAGCNA employs a peel-off permutation scheme to generate a reasonable null distribution based on a prior step of selecting tag CNA markers from the genome being considered. We demonstrate the statistical power of TAGCNA on simulated ground truth data, and validate its applicability using two publicly available cancer datasets: lung and prostate adenocarcinoma. TAGCNA identifies SCEs that are known to be involved with proto-oncogenes (e.g. EGFR, CDK4) and tumor suppressor genes (e.g. CDKN2A, CDKN2B), and provides many additional SCEs with potential biological relevance in these data. TAGCNA can be used to analyze the significance of CNAs in various cancers. It is implemented in R and is freely available at http://tagcna.sourceforge.net/.
Summary: We present a tool for control-free copy number alteration (CNA) detection using deep-sequencing data, particularly useful for cancer studies. The tool deals with two frequent problems in the analysis of cancer deep-sequencing data: absence of control sample and possible polyploidy of cancer cells. FREEC (control-FREE Copy number caller) automatically normalizes and segments copy number profiles (CNPs) and calls CNAs. If ploidy is known, FREEC assigns absolute copy number to each predicted CNA. To normalize raw CNPs, the user can provide a control dataset if available; otherwise GC content is used. We demonstrate that for Illumina single-end, mate-pair or paired-end sequencing, GC-contentr normalization provides smooth profiles that can be further segmented and analyzed in order to predict CNAs.
Availability: Source code and sample data are available at http://bioinfo-out.curie.fr/projects/freec/.
Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.
The detection of genomic copy number alterations (CNA) in cancer based on SNP arrays requires methods that take into account tumour specific factors such as normal cell contamination and tumour heterogeneity. A number of tools have been recently developed but their performance needs yet to be thoroughly assessed. To this aim, a comprehensive model that integrates the factors of normal cell contamination and intra-tumour heterogeneity and that can be translated to synthetic data on which to perform benchmarks is indispensable.
We propose such model and implement it in an R package called CnaGen to synthetically generate a wide range of alterations under different normal cell contamination levels. Six recently published methods for CNA and loss of heterozygosity (LOH) detection on tumour samples were assessed on this synthetic data and on a dilution series of a breast cancer cell-line: ASCAT, GAP, GenoCNA, GPHMM, MixHMM and OncoSNP. We report the recall rates in terms of normal cell contamination levels and alteration characteristics: length, copy number and LOH state, as well as the false discovery rate distribution for each copy number under different normal cell contamination levels.
Assessed methods are in general better at detecting alterations with low copy number and under a little normal cell contamination levels. All methods except GPHMM, which failed to recognize the alteration pattern in the cell-line samples, provided similar results for the synthetic and cell-line sample sets. MixHMM and GenoCNA are the poorliest performing methods, while GAP generally performed better. This supports the viability of approaches other than the common hidden Markov model (HMM)-based.
We devised and implemented a comprehensive model to generate data that simulate tumoural samples genotyped using SNP arrays. The validity of the model is supported by the similarity of the results obtained with synthetic and real data. Based on these results and on the software implementation of the methods, we recommend GAP for advanced users and GPHMM for a fully driven analysis.
The identification of copy number aberration in the human genome is an important area in cancer research. We develop a model for determining genomic copy numbers using high-density single nucleotide polymorphism genotyping microarrays. The method is based on a Bayesian spatial normal mixture model with an unknown number of components corresponding to true copy numbers. A reversible jump Markov chain Monte Carlo algorithm is used to implement the model and perform posterior inference.
The performance of the algorithm is examined on both simulated and real cancer data, and it is compared with the popular CNAG algorithm for copy number detection.
We demonstrate that our Bayesian mixture model performs at least as well as the hidden Markov model based CNAG algorithm and in certain cases does better. One of the added advantages of our method is the flexibility of modeling normal cell contamination in tumor samples.
Motivation: DNA copy number aberration (CNA) is a hallmark of genomic abnormality in tumor cells. Recurrent CNA (RCNA) occurs in multiple cancer samples across the same chromosomal region and has greater implication in tumorigenesis. Current commonly used methods for RCNA identification require CNA calling for individual samples before cross-sample analysis. This two-step strategy may result in a heavy computational burden, as well as a loss of the overall statistical power due to segmentation and discretization of individual sample's data. We propose a population-based approach for RCNA detection with no need of single-sample analysis, which is statistically powerful, computationally efficient and particularly suitable for high-resolution and large-population studies.
Results: Our approach, correlation matrix diagonal segmentation (CMDS), identifies RCNAs based on a between-chromosomal-site correlation analysis. Directly using the raw intensity ratio data from all samples and adopting a diagonal transformation strategy, CMDS substantially reduces computational burden and can obtain results very quickly from large datasets. Our simulation indicates that the statistical power of CMDS is higher than that of single-sample CNA calling based two-step approaches. We applied CMDS to two real datasets of lung cancer and brain cancer from Affymetrix and Illumina array platforms, respectively, and successfully identified known regions of CNA associated with EGFR, KRAS and other important oncogenes. CMDS provides a fast, powerful and easily implemented tool for the RCNA analysis of large-scale data from cancer genomes.
Availability: The R and C programs implementing our method are available at https://dsgweb.wustl.edu/qunyuan/software/cmds.
Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.
Somatic Copy Number Alterations (CNAs) in human genomes are present in almost all human cancers. Systematic efforts to characterize such structural variants must effectively distinguish significant consensus events from random background aberrations. Here we introduce Significant Aberration in Cancer (SAIC), a new method for characterizing and assessing the statistical significance of recurrent CNA units. Three main features of SAIC include: (1) exploiting the intrinsic correlation among consecutive probes to assign a score to each CNA unit instead of single probes; (2) performing permutations on CNA units that preserve correlations inherent in the copy number data; and (3) iteratively detecting Significant Copy Number Aberrations (SCAs) and estimating an unbiased null distribution by applying an SCA-exclusive permutation scheme.
We test and compare the performance of SAIC against four peer methods (GISTIC, STAC, KC-SMART, CMDS) on a large number of simulation datasets. Experimental results show that SAIC outperforms peer methods in terms of larger area under the Receiver Operating Characteristics curve and increased detection power. We then apply SAIC to analyze structural genomic aberrations acquired in four real cancer genome-wide copy number data sets (ovarian cancer, metastatic prostate cancer, lung adenocarcinoma, glioblastoma). When compared with previously reported results, SAIC successfully identifies most SCAs known to be of biological significance and associated with oncogenes (e.g., KRAS, CCNE1, and MYC) or tumor suppressor genes (e.g., CDKN2A/B). Furthermore, SAIC identifies a number of novel SCAs in these copy number data that encompass tumor related genes and may warrant further studies.
Supported by a well-grounded theoretical framework, SAIC has been developed and used to identify SCAs in various cancer copy number data sets, providing useful information to study the landscape of cancer genomes. Open–source and platform-independent SAIC software is implemented using C++, together with R scripts for data formatting and Perl scripts for user interfacing, and it is easy to install and efficient to use. The source code and documentation are freely available at http://www.cbil.ece.vt.edu/software.htm.
Background. Array-based comparative genomic hybridization (array-CGH) is an emerging high-resolution and high-throughput molecular genetic technique that allows genome-wide screening for chromosome alterations. DNA copy number alterations (CNAs) are a hallmark of somatic mutations in tumor genomes and congenital abnormalities that lead to diseases such as mental retardation. However, accurate identification of amplified or deleted regions requires a sequence of different computational analysis steps of the microarray data. Results. We have developed a user-friendly and versatile tool for the normalization, visualization, breakpoint detection, and comparative analysis of array-CGH data which allows the accurate and sensitive detection of CNAs. Conclusion. The implemented option for the determination of minimal altered regions (MARs) from a series of tumor samples is a step forward in the identification of new tumor suppressor genes or oncogenes.
The delineation of genomic copy number abnormalities (CNAs) from cancer samples has been instrumental for identification of tumor suppressor genes and oncogenes and proven useful for clinical marker detection. An increasing number of projects have mapped CNAs using high-resolution microarray based techniques. So far, no single resource does provide a global collection of readily accessible oncogenomic array data.
We here present arrayMap, a curated reference database and bioinformatics resource targeting copy number profiling data in human cancer. The arrayMap database provides a platform for meta-analysis and systems level data integration of high-resolution oncogenomic CNA data. To date, the resource incorporates more than 40,000 arrays in 224 cancer types extracted from several resources, including the NCBI’s Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO), EBI’s ArrayExpress (AE), The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA), publication supplements and direct submissions. For the majority of the included datasets, probe level and integrated visualization facilitate gene level and genome wide data review. Results from multi-case selections can be connected to downstream data analysis and visualization tools.
To our knowledge, currently no data source provides an extensive collection of high resolution oncogenomic CNA data which readily could be used for genomic feature mining, across a representative range of cancer entities. arrayMap represents our effort for providing a long term platform for oncogenomic CNA data independent of specific platform considerations or specific project dependence. The online database can be accessed at http//www.arraymap.org.
Regions with copy number variations (in germline cells) or copy number alteration (in somatic cells) are of great interest for human disease gene mapping and cancer studies. They represent a new type of mutation and are larger-scaled than the single nucleotide polymorphisms. Using genotyping microarray for copy number variation detection has become standard, and there is a need for improving analysis methods.
We apply the cumulative plot to the detection of regions with copy number variation/alteration, on samples taken from a chronic lymphocytic leukemia patient. Two sets of whole-genome genotyping of 317 k single nucleotide polymorphisms, one from the normal cell and another from the cancer cell, are analyzed. We demonstrate the utility of cumulative plot in detecting a 9 Mb (9 ×106 bases) hemizygous deletion and 1 Mb homozygous deletion on chromosome 13. We also show the possibility to detect smaller copy number variation/alteration regions below the 100 kb range.
As a graphic tool, the cumulative plot is an intuitive and a scale-free (window-less) way for detecting copy number variation/alteration regions, especially when such regions are small.
The elucidation of breast cancer subgroups and their molecular drivers requires integrated views of the genome and transcriptome from representative numbers of patients. We present an integrated analysis of copy number and gene expression in a discovery and validation set of 997 and 995 primary breast tumours, respectively, with long-term clinical follow-up. Inherited variants (copy number variants and single nucleotide polymorphisms) and acquired somatic copy number aberrations (CNAs) were associated with expression in ~40% of genes, with the landscape dominated by cis- and trans-acting CNAs. By delineating expression outlier genes driven in cis by CNAs, we identified putative cancer genes, including deletions in PPP2R2A, MTAP and MAP2K4. Unsupervised analysis of paired DNA–RNA profiles revealed novel subgroups with distinct clinical outcomes, which reproduced in the validation cohort. These include a high-risk, oestrogen-receptor-positive 11q13/14 cis-acting subgroup and a favourable prognosis subgroup devoid of CNAs. Trans-acting aberration hotspots were found to modulate subgroup-specific gene networks, including a TCR deletion-mediated adaptive immune response in the ‘CNA-devoid’ subgroup and a basal-specific chromosome 5 deletion-associated mitotic network. Our results provide a novel molecular stratification of the breast cancer population, derived from the impact of somatic CNAs on the transcriptome.
Recently, microarray-based comparative genomic hybridization (array-CGH) has emerged as a very efficient technology with higher resolution for the genome-wide identification of copy number alterations (CNA). Although CNAs are thought to affect gene expression, there is no platform currently available for the integrated CNA-expression analysis. To achieve high-resolution copy number analysis integrated with expression profiles, we established human 30k oligoarray-based genome-wide copy number analysis system and explored the applicability of this system for integrated genome and transcriptome analysis using MDA-MB-231 cell line. We compared the CNAs detected by the oligoarray with those detected by the 3k BAC array for validation. The oligoarray identified the single copy difference more accurately and sensitively than the BAC array. Seventeen CNAs detected by both platforms in MDA-MB-231 such as gains of 5p15.33-13.1, 8q11.22-8q21.13, 17p11.2, and losses of 1p32.3, 8p23.3-8p11.21, and 9p21 were consistently identified in previous studies on breast cancer. There were 122 other small CNAs (mean size 1.79 mb) that were detected by oligoarray only, not by BAC-array. We performed genomic qPCR targeting 7 CNA regions, detected by oligoarray only, and one non-CNA region to validate the oligoarray CNA detection. All qPCR results were consistent with the oligoarray-CGH results. When we explored the possibility of combined interpretation of both DNA copy number and RNA expression profiles, mean DNA copy number and RNA expression levels showed a significant correlation. In conclusion, this 30k oligoarray-CGH system can be a reasonable choice for analyzing whole genome CNAs and RNA expression profiles at a lower cost.
cell line, tumor; gene dosage; gene expression profiling; oligonucleotide array sequence analysis
The disease course of chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) varies significantly within cytogenetic groups. We hypothesized that high resolution genomic analysis of CLL would identify additional recurrent abnormalities associated with short time to first therapy (TTFT).
We undertook high resolution genomic analysis of 161 prospectively enrolled CLLs using Affymetrix 6.0 SNP arrays, and integrated analysis of this dataset with gene expression profiles.
Copy number analysis (CNA) of nonprogressive CLL reveals a stable genotype, with a median of only 1 somatic CNA per sample. Progressive CLL with 13q deletion was associated with additional somatic CNAs, and a greater number of CNAs was predictive of TTFT. We identified other recurrent CNAs associated with short TTFT: 8q24 amplification focused on the cancer susceptibility locus near MYC in 3.7%; 3q26 amplifications focused on PIK3CA in 5.6%; and 8p deletions in 5% of patients. Sequencing of MYC further identified somatic mutations in two CLLs. We determined which catalytic subunits of PI3K were in active complex with the p85 regulatory subunit, and demonstrated enrichment for the alpha subunit in three CLLs carrying PIK3CA amplification.
Our findings implicate amplifications of 3q26 focused on PIK3CA and 8q24 focused on MYC in CLL.
CLL; PIK3CA; MYC; genomics; copy number
DNA copy number alterations are frequently observed in ovarian cancer, but it remains a challenge to identify the most relevant alterations and the specific causal genes in those regions.
We obtained high-resolution 500K SNP array data for 52 ovarian tumors and identified the most statistically significant minimal genomic regions with the most prevalent and highest-level copy number alterations (recurrent CNAs). Within a region of recurrent CNA, comparison of expression levels in tumors with a given CNA to tumors lacking that CNA and to whole normal ovary samples was used to select genes with CNA-specific expression patterns. A public expression array data set of laser capture micro-dissected (LCM) non-malignant fallopian tube epithelia and LCM ovarian serous adenocarcinoma was used to evaluate the effect of cell-type mixture biases.
Fourteen recurrent deletions were detected on chromosomes 4, 6, 9, 12, 13, 15, 16, 17, 18, 22 and most prevalently on X and 8. Copy number and expression data suggest several apoptosis mediators as candidate drivers of the 8p deletions. Sixteen recurrent gains were identified on chromosomes 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 10, 12, 15, 17, 19, and 20, with the most prevalent gains localized to 8q and 3q. Within the 8q amplicon, PVT1, but not MYC, was strongly over-expressed relative to tumors lacking this CNA and showed over-expression relative to normal ovary. Likewise, the cell polarity regulators PRKCI and ECT2 were identified as putative drivers of two distinct amplicons on 3q. Co-occurrence analyses suggested potential synergistic or antagonistic relationships between recurrent CNAs. Genes within regions of recurrent CNA showed an enrichment of Cancer Census genes, particularly when filtered for CNA-specific expression.
These analyses provide detailed views of ovarian cancer genomic changes and highlight the benefits of using multiple reference sample types for the evaluation of CNA-specific expression changes.
Copy Number Alterations (CNAs) such as deletions and duplications; compose a larger percentage of genetic variations than single nucleotide polymorphisms or other structural variations in cancer genomes that undergo major chromosomal re-arrangements. It is, therefore, imperative to identify cancer-specific somatic copy number alterations (SCNAs), with respect to matched normal tissue, in order to understand their association with the disease. We have devised an accurate, sensitive, and easy-to-use tool, COPS, COpy number using Paired Samples, for detecting SCNAs. We rigorously tested the performance of COPS using short sequence simulated reads at various sizes and coverage of SCNAs, read depths, read lengths and also with real tumor:normal paired samples. We found COPS to perform better in comparison to other known SCNA detection tools for all evaluated parameters, namely, sensitivity (detection of true positives), specificity (detection of false positives) and size accuracy. COPS performed well for sequencing reads of all lengths when used with most upstream read alignment tools. Additionally, by incorporating a downstream boundary segmentation detection tool, the accuracy of SCNA boundaries was further improved. Here, we report an accurate, sensitive and easy to use tool in detecting cancer-specific SCNAs using short-read sequence data. In addition to cancer, COPS can be used for any disease as long as sequence reads from both disease and normal samples from the same individual are available. An added boundary segmentation detection module makes COPS detected SCNA boundaries more specific for the samples studied. COPS is available at ftp://22.214.171.124 with username “cops” and password “cops”.
DNA copy number aberrations (CNAs) and gene expression (GE) changes provide valuable information for studying chromosomal instability and its consequences in cancer. While it is clear that the structural aberrations and the transcript levels are intertwined, their relationship is more complex and subtle than initially suspected. Most studies so far have focused on how a CNA affects the expression levels of those genes contained within that CNA.
To better understand the impact of CNAs on expression, we investigated the correlation of each CNA to all other genes in the genome. The correlations are computed over multiple patients that have both expression and copy number measurements in brain, bladder, and breast cancer data sets. We find that a CNA has a direct impact on the gene amplified or deleted, but it also has a broad, indirect impact elsewhere. To identify a set of CNAs that is coordinately associated with the expression changes of a set of genes, we used a biclustering algorithm on the correlation matrix. For each of the three cancer types examined, the aberrations in several loci are associated with cancer-type specific biological pathways that have been described in the literature: CNAs of chromosome (chr) 7p13 were significantly correlated with epidermal growth factor receptor signaling pathway in glioblastoma multiforme, chr 13q with NF-kappaB cascades in bladder cancer, and chr 11p with Reck pathway in breast cancer. In all three data sets, gene sets related to cell cycle/division such as M phase, DNA replication, and cell division were also associated with CNAs. Our results suggest that CNAs are both directly and indirectly correlated with changes in expression and that it is beneficial to examine the indirect effects of CNAs.
Genomic copy number variations are a typical feature of cancer. These variations may influence cancer outcomes as well as effectiveness of treatment. There are many computational methods developed to detect regions with deletions and amplifications without estimating actual copy numbers (CN) in these regions. We have developed a computational method capable of detecting regions with deletions and amplifications as well as estimating actual copy numbers in these regions. The method is based on determining how signal intensity from different probes is related to CN, taking into account changes in the total genome size, and incorporating into analysis contamination of the solid tumors with benign tissue. Hidden Markov Model is used to obtain the most likely CN solution. The method has been implemented for Affymetrix 500K GeneChip arrays and Agilent 244K oligonucleotide arrays. The results of CN analysis for normal cell lines, cancer cell lines, and tumor samples are presented. The method is capable of detecting copy number alterations in tumor samples with up to 80% contamination with benign tissue. Analysis of 178 cancer cell lines reveals multiple regions of common homozygous deletions and strong amplifications encompassing known tumor suppressor genes and oncogenes as well as novel cancer related genes.
Genomic copy number alteration (CNA) that are recurrent across multiple samples often harbor critical genes that can drive either the initiation or the progression of cancer disease. Up to now, most researchers investigating recurrent CNAs consider separately the marginal frequencies for copy gain or loss and select the areas of interest based on arbitrary cut-off thresholds of these frequencies. In practice, these analyses ignore the interdependencies between the propensity of being deleted or amplified for a clone. In this context, a joint analysis of the copy number changes across tumor samples may bring new insights about patterns of recurrent CNAs.
We propose to identify patterns of recurrent CNAs across tumor samples from high-resolution comparative genomic hybridization microarrays. Clustering is achieved by modeling the copy number state (loss, no-change, gain) as a multinomial distribution with probabilities parameterized through a latent class model leading to nine patterns of recurrent CNAs. This model gives us a powerful tool to identify clones with contrasting propensity of being deleted or amplified across tumor samples. We applied this model to a homogeneous series of 65 lung adenocarcinomas.
Our latent class model analysis identified interesting patterns of chromosomal aberrations. Our results showed that about thirty percent of the genomic clones were classified either as "exclusively" deleted or amplified recurrent CNAs and could be considered as non random chromosomal events. Most of the known oncogenes or tumor suppressor genes associated with lung adenocarcinoma were located within these areas. We also describe genomic areas of potential interest and show that an increase of the frequency of amplification in these particular areas is significantly associated with poorer survival.
Analyzing jointly deletions and amplifications through our latent class model analysis allows highlighting specific genomic areas with exclusively amplified or deleted recurrent CNAs which are good candidate for harboring oncogenes or tumor suppressor genes.
Motivation: Somatic amplification of particular genomic regions and selection of cellular lineages with such amplifications drives tumor development. However, pinpointing genes under such selection has been difficult due to the large span of these regions. Our recently-developed method, the amplification distortion test (ADT), identifies specific nucleotide alleles and haplotypes that confer better survival for tumor cells when somatically amplified. In this work, we focus on evaluating ADT's power to detect such causal variants across a variety of tumor dataset scenarios.
Results: Towards this end, we generated multiple parameter-based, synthetic datasets—derived from real data—that contain somatic copy number aberrations (CNAs) of various lengths and frequencies over germline single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) genome-wide. Gold-standard causal sub-regions were assigned within these CNAs, followed by an assessment of ADT's ability to detect these sub-regions. Results indicate that ADT possesses high sensitivity and specificity in large sample sizes across most parameter cases, including those that more closely reflect existing SNP and CNA cancer data.
Availability: ADT is implemented in the Java software HADiT and can be downloaded through the SVN repository (via Develop→ Code→SVN Browse) at: http://sourceforge.net/projects/hadit/.
Supplementary Information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.
Motivation: The complexity of a large number of recently discovered copy number polymorphisms is much higher than initially thought, thus making it more difficult to detect them in the presence of significant measurement noise. In this scenario, separate normalization and segmentation is prone to lead to many false detections of changes in copy number. New approaches capable of jointly modeling the copy number and the non-copy number (noise) hybridization effects across multiple samples will potentially lead to more accurate results.
Methods: In this article, the genome alteration detection analysis (GADA) approach introduced in our previous work is extended to a multiple sample model. The copy number component is independent for each sample and uses a sparse Bayesian prior, while the reference hybridization level is not necessarily sparse but identical on all samples. The expectation maximization (EM) algorithm used to fit the model iteratively determines whether the observed hybridization levels are more likely due to a copy number variation or to a shared hybridization bias.
Results: The new proposed approach is compared with the currently used strategy of separate normalization followed by independent segmentation of each array. Real microarray data obtained from HapMap samples are randomly partitioned to create different reference sets. Using the new approach, copy number and reference intensity estimates are significantly less variable if the reference set changes; and a higher consistency on copy numbers detected within HapMap family trios is obtained. Finally, the running time to fit the model grows linearly in the number samples and probes.
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Supplementary information:Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.
We propose a statistical framework, named genoCN, to simultaneously dissect copy number states and genotypes using high-density SNP (single nucleotide polymorphism) arrays. There are at least two types of genomic DNA copy number differences: copy number variations (CNVs) and copy number aberrations (CNAs). While CNVs are naturally occurring and inheritable, CNAs are acquired somatic alterations most often observed in tumor tissues only. CNVs tend to be short and more sparsely located in the genome compared with CNAs. GenoCN consists of two components, genoCNV and genoCNA, designed for CNV and CNA studies, respectively. In contrast to most existing methods, genoCN is more flexible in that the model parameters are estimated from the data instead of being decided a priori. GenoCNA also incorporates two important strategies for CNA studies. First, the effects of tissue contamination are explicitly modeled. Second, if SNP arrays are performed for both tumor and normal tissues of one individual, the genotype calls from normal tissue are used to study CNAs in tumor tissue. We evaluated genoCN by applications to 162 HapMap individuals and a brain tumor (glioblastoma) dataset and showed that our method can successfully identify both types of copy number differences and produce high-quality genotype calls.
DNA copy number aberration (CNA) is one of the key characteristics of cancer cells. Recent studies demonstrated the feasibility of utilizing high density single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) genotyping arrays to detect CNA. Compared with the two-color array-based comparative genomic hybridization (array-CGH), the SNP arrays offer much higher probe density and lower signal-to-noise ratio at the single SNP level. To accurately identify small segments of CNA from SNP array data, segmentation methods that are sensitive to CNA while resistant to noise are required.
We have developed a highly sensitive algorithm for the edge detection of copy number data which is especially suitable for the SNP array-based copy number data. The method consists of an over-sensitive edge-detection step and a test-based forward-backward edge selection step.
Using simulations constructed from real experimental data, the method shows high sensitivity and specificity in detecting small copy number changes in focused regions. The method is implemented in an R package FASeg, which includes data processing and visualization utilities, as well as libraries for processing Affymetrix SNP array data.
Array-based comparative genomic hybridization (aCGH) allows measuring DNA copy number at the whole genome scale. In cancer studies, one may be interested in identifying DNA copy number aberrations (CNAs) associated with certain clinicopathological characteristics such as cancer metastasis. We proposed to define test regions based on copy number pattern profiles across multiple samples, using either smoothed log2-ratio or discrete data of copy number gain/loss calls. Association test performed on the refined test regions instead of the probes has improved power due to reduced number of tests. We also compared three types of measurement of copy number levels, normalized log2-ratio, smoothed log2-ratio, and copy number gain or loss calls in statistical hypothesis testing. The relative strengths and weaknesses of the proposed method were demonstrated using both simulation studies and real data analysis of a liver cancer study.
aCGH; DNA copy number aberration (CNA); downstream analysis; gain/loss calls; segmentation
Copy number alterations (CNA) are common events occurring in leukaemias and solid tumors. Comparative Genome Hybridization (CGH) is actually the gold standard technique to analyze CNAs; however, CGH analysis requires dedicated instruments and is able to perform only low resolution Loss of Heterozygosity (LOH) analyses. Here we present CEQer (Comparative Exome Quantification analyzer), a new graphical, event-driven tool for CNA/allelic-imbalance (AI) coupled analysis of exome sequencing data. By using case-control matched exome data, CEQer performs a comparative digital exonic quantification to generate CNA data and couples this information with exome-wide LOH and allelic imbalance detection. This data is used to build mixed statistical/heuristic models allowing the identification of CNA/AI events. To test our tool, we initially used in silico generated data, then we performed whole-exome sequencing from 20 leukemic specimens and corresponding matched controls and we analyzed the results using CEQer. Taken globally, these analyses showed that the combined use of comparative digital exon quantification and LOH/AI allows generating very accurate CNA data. Therefore, we propose CEQer as an efficient, robust and user-friendly graphical tool for the identification of CNA/AI in the context of whole-exome sequencing data.