Transcriptome-Wide Off-Target Effects of Steric-Blocking Oligonucleotides
Erle M. Holgersen,
Amit G. Deshwar
Posted 03 Sep 2020
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/2020.09.03.281667
Posted 03 Sep 2020
Steric-blocking oligonucleotides (SBOs) are short, single-stranded nucleic acids designed to modulate gene expression by binding to mRNA and blocking access from cellular machinery such as splicing factors. SBOs have the potential to bind to near-complementary sites in the transcriptome, causing off-target effects. In this study, we used RNA-seq to evaluate the off-target differential splicing events of 81 SBOs and differential expression events of 46 SBOs. Our results suggest that differential splicing events are predominantly hybridization-driven, while differential expression events are more common and driven by other mechanisms. We further evaluated the performance of in silico screens for off-target events, and found an edit distance cutoff of three to result in a sensitivity of 14% and false discovery rate of 99%. A machine learning model incorporating splicing predictions substantially improved the ability to prioritize low edit distance hits, increasing sensitivity from 4% to 26% at a fixed FDR. Despite these large improvements in performance, the approach does not detect the majority of events at a false discovery rate below 99%. Our results suggest that in silico methods are currently of limited use for predicting the off-target effects of SBOs. ### Competing Interest Statement All authors are current or former employees and shareholders in Deep Genomics Inc. Deep Genomics is developing steric-blocking oligonucleotide therapies.
- Downloaded 337 times
- Download rankings, all-time:
- Site-wide: 78,348
- In molecular biology: 2,304
- Year to date:
- Site-wide: 13,321
- Since beginning of last month:
- Site-wide: 9,968
Downloads over time
Distribution of downloads per paper, site-wide
- 27 Nov 2020: The website and API now include results pulled from medRxiv as well as bioRxiv.
- 18 Dec 2019: We're pleased to announce PanLingua, a new tool that enables you to search for machine-translated bioRxiv preprints using more than 100 different languages.
- 21 May 2019: PLOS Biology has published a community page about Rxivist.org and its design.
- 10 May 2019: The paper analyzing the Rxivist dataset has been published at eLife.
- 1 Mar 2019: We now have summary statistics about bioRxiv downloads and submissions.
- 8 Feb 2019: Data from Altmetric is now available on the Rxivist details page for every preprint. Look for the "donut" under the download metrics.
- 30 Jan 2019: preLights has featured the Rxivist preprint and written about our findings.
- 22 Jan 2019: Nature just published an article about Rxivist and our data.
- 13 Jan 2019: The Rxivist preprint is live!