A team of researchers led by Prof. Stephan Beck at University College London have demonstrated a novel method for large-scale, targeted bisulfite sequencing using the RainDance ThunderStorm™ Targeted DNA Sequencing System and MethylSeq Solution. The study included a wide range of starting DNA quantity and quality, different cell types and application of MDA-based WGA of bisulfite-converted DNA. In addition, the team was able to prove that this method is suitable for epigenome-wide association studies (EWAS) validation and replication experiments. The findings were published in the journal of Epigenetics earlier this month.
As part of the study, the team compared DNA methylation levels at 498 target loci (1001 PCR amplicons) in human whole blood, osteosarcoma cells and an archived tumor tissue sample. They assessed the ability of its method to accurately measure DNA methylation over a range of DNA quantities (from 10 to 1500 ng), both with and without whole-genome amplification (WGA) following bisulfite conversion. DNA methylation profiles generated using at least 100 ng correlated well (median R = 0.92) with those generated on the platform of choice EWAS. WGA allowed for testing of samples with a starting DNA amount of 10 and 50 ng, although a reduced correlation was observed (median R = 0.79).
The team concluded its method is suitable for measuring DNA methylation levels using nanogram quantities of DNA, and can be used to study candidate epigenetic biomarker loci in an accurate and high-throughput manner, paving the way for its application to routine clinical diagnostics.
A RainDance representative will follow up with you to answer your questions and discuss how our technology can help advance your epigenetic research.