Splicing accuracy varies across human introns, tissues and age

Image credit: bioRxiv


Alternative splicing impacts most multi-exonic human genes. Inaccuracies during this process may have an important role in ageing and disease. Here, we investigated mis-splicing using RNA-sequencing data from ~14K control samples and 42 human body sites, focusing on split reads partially mapping to known transcripts in annotation. We show that mis-splicing occurs at different rates across introns and tissues and that these splicing inaccuracies are primarily affected by the abundance of core components of the spliceosome assembly and its regulators. Using publicly available data on short-hairpin RNA-knockdowns of numerous spliceosomal components and related regulators, we found support for the importance of RNA-binding proteins in mis-splicing. We also demonstrated that age is positively correlated with mis-splicing, and it affects genes implicated in neurodegenerative diseases. This in-depth characterisation of mis-splicing can have important implications for our understanding of the role of splicing inaccuracies in human disease and the interpretation of long-read RNA-sequencing data.

Leonardo Collado-Torres
Leonardo Collado-Torres
Investigator @ LIBD, Assistant Professor, Department of Biostatistics @ JHBSPH

#rstats @Bioconductor/🧠 genomics @LieberInstitute/@lcgunam @jhubiostat @jtleek @andrewejaffe alumni/@LIBDrstats @CDSBMexico co-founder