A portable system for rapid bacterial composition analysis using a nanopore-based sequencer and laptop computer
18th July 2017 - Scientific Reports
We developed a portable system for 16S rDNA analyses consisting of a nanopore technology-based sequencer, the MinION, and laptop computers, and assessed its potential ability to determine bacterial compositions rapidly. We tested our protocols using a mock bacterial community that contained equimolar 16S rDNA and a pleural effusion from a patient with empyema, for time effectiveness and accuracy. MinION sequencing targeting 16S rDNA detected all 20 of the bacterial species present in the mock bacterial community. Time course analysis indicated that the sequence data obtained during the first 5 minutes of sequencing (1,379 bacterial reads) were enough to detect all 20 bacteria in the mock sample and to determine species composition, consistent with results of those obtained from 4 hours of sequencing (24,202 reads). Additionally, using a clinical sample extracted from the empyema patient’s pleural effusion, we could identify major bacterial pathogens in that effusion using our rapid sequencing and analysis protocol. All results are comparable to conventional 16S rDNA sequencing results using an IonPGM sequencer. Our results suggest that rapid sequencing and bacterial composition determination are possible within 2 hours after obtaining a DNA sample.