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Washing scaling of GeneChip microarray expression

DOI: 10.1186/1471-2105-11-291

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Abstract:

We conducted experiments on GeneChip microarrays with altered protocols for washing, scanning and staining to study the probe-level intensity changes as a function of the number of washing cycles. For calibration and analysis of the intensity data we make use of the 'hook' method which allows intensity contributions due to non-specific and specific hybridization of perfect match (PM) and mismatch (MM) probes to be disentangled in a sequence specific manner. On average, washing according to the standard protocol removes about 90% of the non-specific background and about 30-50% and less than 10% of the specific targets from the MM and PM, respectively. Analysis of the washing kinetics shows that the signal-to-noise ratio doubles roughly every ten stringent washing cycles. Washing can be characterized by time-dependent rate constants which reflect the heterogeneous character of target binding to microarray probes. We propose an empirical washing function which estimates the survival of probe bound targets. It depends on the intensity contribution due to specific and non-specific hybridization per probe which can be estimated for each probe using existing methods. The washing function allows probe intensities to be calibrated for the effect of washing. On a relative scale, proper calibration for washing markedly increases expression measures, especially in the limit of small and large values.Washing is among the factors which potentially distort expression measures. The proposed first-order correction method allows direct implementation in existing calibration algorithms for microarray data. We provide an experimental 'washing data set' which might be used by the community for developing amendments of the washing correction.Gene expression profiling using microarrays has become a standard technique for the large scale estimation of transcript abundance [1]. The method is based on the hybridization of RNA prepared from samples of interest with gene-specific oligonucleoti

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