Long-read sequencing for identification of insertion sites in large transposon mutant libraries

Muhammad Yasir, A. Keith Turner, Martin Lott, Steven Rudder, David Baker, Sarah Bastkowski, Andrew J. Page, Mark A. Webber, Ian G. Charles

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Transposon insertion site sequencing (TIS) is a powerful method for associating genotype to phenotype. However, all TIS methods described to date use short nucleotide sequence reads which cannot uniquely determine the locations of transposon insertions within repeating genomic sequences where the repeat units are longer than the sequence read length. To overcome this limitation, we have developed a TIS method using Oxford Nanopore sequencing technology that generates and uses long nucleotide sequence reads; we have called this method LoRTIS (Long-Read Transposon Insertion-site Sequencing). LoRTIS enabled the unique localisation of transposon insertion sites within long repetitive genetic elements of E. coli, such as the transposase genes of insertion sequences and copies of the ~ 5 kb ribosomal RNA operon. We demonstrate that LoRTIS is reproducible, gives comparable results to short-read TIS methods for essential genes, and better resolution around repeat elements. The Oxford Nanopore sequencing device that we used is cost-effective, small and easily portable. Thus, LoRTIS is an efficient means of uniquely identifying transposon insertion sites within long repetitive genetic elements and can be easily transported to, and used in, laboratories that lack access to expensive DNA sequencing facilities.
Original languageEnglish
Article number3546
JournalScientific Reports
Publication statusPublished - 3 Mar 2022

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