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1.  A Two-Dimensional Pooling Strategy for Rare Variant Detection on Next-Generation Sequencing Platforms 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(4):e93455.
We describe a method for pooling and sequencing DNA from a large number of individual samples while preserving information regarding sample identity. DNA from 576 individuals was arranged into four 12 row by 12 column matrices and then pooled by row and by column resulting in 96 total pools with 12 individuals in each pool. Pooling of DNA was carried out in a two-dimensional fashion, such that DNA from each individual is present in exactly one row pool and exactly one column pool. By considering the variants observed in the rows and columns of a matrix we are able to trace rare variants back to the specific individuals that carry them. The pooled DNA samples were enriched over a 250 kb region previously identified by GWAS to significantly predispose individuals to lung cancer. All 96 pools (12 row and 12 column pools from 4 matrices) were barcoded and sequenced on an Illumina HiSeq 2000 instrument with an average depth of coverage greater than 4,000×. Verification based on Ion PGM sequencing confirmed the presence of 91.4% of confidently classified SNVs assayed. In this way, each individual sample is sequenced in multiple pools providing more accurate variant calling than a single pool or a multiplexed approach. This provides a powerful method for rare variant detection in regions of interest at a reduced cost to the researcher.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0093455
PMCID: PMC3984111  PMID: 24728235
2.  Comparison of Pathway Analysis Approaches Using Lung Cancer GWAS Data Sets 
PLoS ONE  2012;7(2):e31816.
Pathway analysis has been proposed as a complement to single SNP analyses in GWAS. This study compared pathway analysis methods using two lung cancer GWAS data sets based on four studies: one a combined data set from Central Europe and Toronto (CETO); the other a combined data set from Germany and MD Anderson (GRMD). We searched the literature for pathway analysis methods that were widely used, representative of other methods, and had available software for performing analysis. We selected the programs EASE, which uses a modified Fishers Exact calculation to test for pathway associations, GenGen (a version of Gene Set Enrichment Analysis (GSEA)), which uses a Kolmogorov-Smirnov-like running sum statistic as the test statistic, and SLAT, which uses a p-value combination approach. We also included a modified version of the SUMSTAT method (mSUMSTAT), which tests for association by averaging χ2 statistics from genotype association tests. There were nearly 18000 genes available for analysis, following mapping of more than 300,000 SNPs from each data set. These were mapped to 421 GO level 4 gene sets for pathway analysis. Among the methods designed to be robust to biases related to gene size and pathway SNP correlation (GenGen, mSUMSTAT and SLAT), the mSUMSTAT approach identified the most significant pathways (8 in CETO and 1 in GRMD). This included a highly plausible association for the acetylcholine receptor activity pathway in both CETO (FDR≤0.001) and GRMD (FDR = 0.009), although two strong association signals at a single gene cluster (CHRNA3-CHRNA5-CHRNB4) drive this result, complicating its interpretation. Few other replicated associations were found using any of these methods. Difficulty in replicating associations hindered our comparison, but results suggest mSUMSTAT has advantages over the other approaches, and may be a useful pathway analysis tool to use alongside other methods such as the commonly used GSEA (GenGen) approach.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0031816
PMCID: PMC3283683  PMID: 22363742

Results 1-2 (2)