A chromosomal-level genome assembly for the insect vector for Chagas disease, Triatoma rubrofasciata

Gigascience. 2019 Aug 1;8(8):giz089. doi: 10.1093/gigascience/giz089.


Background: Triatoma rubrofasciata is a widespread pathogen vector for Chagas disease, an illness that affects approximately 7 million people worldwide. Despite its importance to human health, its evolutionary origin has not been conclusively determined. A reference genome for T. rubrofasciata is not yet available.

Finding: We have sequenced the genome of a female individual with T. rubrofasciatausing a single molecular DNA sequencing technology (i.e., PacBio Sequel platform) and have successfully reconstructed a whole-genome (680-Mb) assembly that covers 90% of the nuclear genome (757 Mb). Through Hi-C analysis, we have reconstructed full-length chromosomes of this female individual that has 13 unique chromosomes (2n = 24 = 22 + X1 + X2) with a contig N50 of 2.72 Mb and a scaffold N50 of 50.7 Mb. This genome has achieved a high base-level accuracy of 99.99%. This platinum-grade genome assembly has 12,691 annotated protein-coding genes. More than 95.1% of BUSCO genes were single-copy completed, indicating a high level of completeness of the genome.

Conclusion: The platinum-grade genome assembly and its annotation provide valuable information for future in-depth comparative genomics studies, including sexual determination analysis in T. rubrofasciata and the pathogenesis of Chagas disease.

Keywords: Triatoma rubrofasciata; Hi-C; Iso-Seq; PacBio Sequel platform; RNA-Seq; chromosomal-level assembly; comparative genomics.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Chagas Disease / parasitology
  • Chagas Disease / transmission
  • Chromosomes, Insect*
  • Computational Biology / methods
  • Genome*
  • Genomics* / methods
  • Insect Vectors / classification
  • Insect Vectors / genetics*
  • Molecular Sequence Annotation
  • Phylogeny
  • Repetitive Sequences, Nucleic Acid
  • Triatoma / parasitology