Launch of 16S analysis workflow

The 16S rRNA gene is present in all bacteria and archaea. Including both consistent and highly variable regions, the gene is ideal for sequence-based identification of these organisms, particularly in metagenomics (mixed samples).

Oxford Nanopore has now released a workflow to enable users of its sequencing technologies to classify mixed samples and obtain accurate results for single reads at the genus level.

The workflow is designed to BLAST basecalled sequence against the NCBI 16S bacterial database, which contains 18,927 16S sequences from different organisms. Each read is classified based on % coverage and identity*.

The 16S workflow will be useful to any researcher interested in identifying pathogens in a mixed sample or understanding the composition of a microbial community; both already thriving subjects of research within the nanopore community.

Further reading:

*This is in contrast to the What's In My Pot (WIMP) application, which uses kraken to align all reads from a mixed sample to an NCBI database of bacteria, viruses and fungi.  Between the WIMP and 16S workflows, nearly all scenarios for taxonomic assignment of small-genome species are covered.