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Computational approaches towards reducing contamination in single-cell RNA-seq data

By Siamak Yousefi, Hao Chen, Jesse F Ingels, Melinda S McCarty, Arthur G. Centeno, Sumana Chintalapudi, Megan K. Mulligan, Pete A Williams, Simon J John, Bryan W. Jones, Monica M Jablonski, T J. Hollingsworth, Eldon E. Geisert, Lu Lu, Robert W. Williams

Posted 16 Jul 2020
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/2020.07.15.205062

Single cell RNA sequencing has enabled quantification of single cells and identification of different cell types and subtypes as well as cell functions in different tissues. Single cell RNA sequence analyses assume acquired RNAs correspond to cells, however, RNAs from contamination within the input data are also captured by these assays. The sequencing of background contamination as well as unwanted cells making their way to the final assay Potentially confound the correct biological interpretation of single cell transcriptomic data. Here we demonstrate two approaches to deal with background contamination as well as profiling of unwanted cells in the assays. We use three real-life datasets of whole-cell capture and nucleotide single-cell captures generated by Fluidigm and 10x technologies and show that these methods reduce the effect of contamination, strengthen clustering of cells and improves biological interpretation. ### Competing Interest Statement The authors have declared no competing interest.

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