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Curr Protoc Mol Biol. 2013 Jul;Chapter 4:Unit 4.18. doi: 10.1002/0471142727.mb0418s103.

Genome-wide annotation and quantitation of translation by ribosome profiling.

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Department of Cellular and Molecular Pharmacology, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, CA, USA.


Recent studies highlight the importance of translational control in determining protein abundance, underscoring the value of measuring gene expression at the level of translation. A protocol for genome-wide, quantitative analysis of in vivo translation by deep sequencing is presented here. This ribosome-profiling approach maps the exact positions of ribosomes on transcripts by nuclease footprinting. The nuclease-protected mRNA fragments are converted into a DNA library suitable for deep sequencing using a strategy that minimizes bias. The abundance of different footprint fragments in deep sequencing data reports on the amount of translation of a gene. Additionally, footprints reveal the exact regions of the transcriptome that are translated. To better define translated reading frames, an adaptation that reveals the sites of translation initiation by pre-treating cells with harringtonine to immobilize initiating ribosomes is described. The protocol described requires 5 to 7 days to generate a completed ribosome profiling sequencing library. Sequencing and data analysis requires an additional 4 to 5 days.

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