Purpose: Accurate detection of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) alterations is essential for the diagnosis of mitochondrial diseases. The development of high-throughput sequencing technologies has enhanced the detection sensitivity of mtDNA pathogenic variants, but the detection of mtDNA rearrangements, especially multiple deletions, is still poorly processed. Here, we present eKLIPse, a sensitive and specific tool allowing the detection and quantification of large mtDNA rearrangements from single and paired-end sequencing data.
Methods: The methodology was first validated using a set of simulated data to assess the detection sensitivity and specificity, and second with a series of sequencing data from mitochondrial disease patients carrying either single or multiple deletions, related to pathogenic variants in nuclear genes involved in mtDNA maintenance.
Results: eKLIPse provides the precise breakpoint positions and the cumulated percentage of mtDNA rearrangements at a given gene location with a detection sensitivity lower than 0.5% mutant. eKLIPse software is available either as a script to be integrated in a bioinformatics pipeline, or as user-friendly graphical interface to visualize the results through a Circos representation ( https://github.com/dooguypapua/eKLIPse ).
Conclusion: Thus, eKLIPse represents a useful resource to study the causes and consequences of mtDNA rearrangements, for further genotype/phenotype correlations in mitochondrial disorders.
Keywords: mitochondrial diseases; mitochondrial genome; mtDNA deletions; next-generation sequencing; soft clipping.