Metatranscriptomics & Metagenomics

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Metatranscriptomics & Metagenomics

Microbiomes are ubiquitous and are found in the ocean, the soil, and in/on other living organisms. Changes in the microbiome can impact the health of the environmental niche in which they reside. In order to learn more about these communities, different approaches based on data from multiple omics have been pursued.

Metagenomics produces a taxonomical profile of the sample whereas metatranscriptomics helps us to obtain a functional profile. The National Institute of Health has funded a major initiative that aims to generate resources for a comprehensive characterization of the human microbiome to understand its impact on human health and disease. Studies have also shown that the structure of the microbial community is significantly different in five areas of the human body (gut, mouth, airways, urogenital, and skin), and that this seems to be independent of gender, age, and ethnicity.

The Earth Microbiome Project (EMP) is a remarkable effort started in 2010 to characterize the diversity, distribution, and structure of microbial ecosystems across the planet and has already gathered over 30,000 samples. Their focus is on diverse ecosystems, including not only the ones within the bodies of humans, animals, and plants but also terrestrial, marine, freshwater, sediment, air, and constructed environments, as well as every intersection of these ecosystems.

By focusing on what genes are expressed by the entire microbial community, metatranscriptomics sheds light on the active functional profile of a microbial community.

Applications of Metatranscriptomics & Metagenomics
  • Provides a snapshot of the gene expression in a given sample at a given moment and under specific conditions by capturing the total mRNA
  • Metagenomics and metatranscriptomics are highly relevant in a host of industries such as the following:
    • Healthcare
    • Medicine and Pharmaceutical
    • Chemical – Agrochemicals and Fine Chemical
    • Agriculture
    • Ecology
  • Unigenomics provides sequencing and bioinformatic analysis services for all types of metagenome/metatranscriptome samples with international publication standards.

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