MapReduce for accurate error correction of next-generation sequencing data

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Journal Article
Bioinformatics, 2017, 33 (23), pp. 3844 - 3851
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© The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. Motivation: Next-generation sequencing platforms have produced huge amounts of sequence data. This is revolutionizing every aspect of genetic and genomic research. However, these sequence datasets contain quite a number of machine-induced errors—e.g. errors due to substitution can be as high as 2.5%. Existing error-correction methods are still far from perfect. In fact, more errors are sometimes introduced than correct corrections, especially by the prevalent k-mer based methods. The existing methods have also made limited exploitation of on-demand cloud computing. Results: We introduce an error-correction method named MEC, which uses a two-layered MapReduce technique to achieve high correction performance. In the first layer, all the input sequences are mapped to groups to identify candidate erroneous bases in parallel. In the second layer, the erroneous bases at the same position are linked together from all the groups for making statistically reliable corrections. Experiments on real and simulated datasets show that our method outperforms existing methods remarkably. Its per-position error rate is consistently the lowest, and the correction gain is always the highest.
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