Hybrid de novo genome assembly for the generation of complete genomes of urinary bacteria using short-and long-read sequencing technologies

Belle M. Sharon, Neha V. Hulyalkar, Vivian H. Nguyen, Philippe E. Zimmern, Kelli L. Palmer, Nicole J. De Nisco

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Complete genome sequences provide valuable data for the understanding of genetic diversity and unique colonization factors of urinary microbes. These data may include mobile genetic elements, such as plasmids and extrachromosomal phage, that contribute to the dissemination of antimicrobial resistance and further complicate treatment of urinary tract infection (UTI). In addition to providing fine resolution of genome structure, complete, closed genomes allow for the detailed comparative genomics and evolutionary analyses. The generation of complete genomes de novo has long been a challenging task due to limitations of available sequencing technology. Paired-end Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) produces high quality short reads often resulting in accurate but fragmented genome assemblies. On the contrary, Nanopore sequencing provides long reads of lower quality normally leading to error-prone complete assemblies. Such errors may hamper genome-wide association studies or provide misleading variant analysis results. Therefore, hybrid approaches combining both short and long reads have emerged as reliable methods to achieve highly accurate closed bacterial genomes. Reported herein is a comprehensive method for the culture of diverse urinary bacteria, species identification by 16S rRNA gene sequencing, extraction of genomic DNA (gDNA), and generation of short and long reads by NGS and Nanopore platforms, respectively. Additionally, this method describes a bioinformatic pipeline of quality control, assembly, and gene prediction algorithms for the generation of annotated complete genome sequences. Combination of bioinformatic tools enables the selection of high quality read data for hybrid genome assembly and downstream analysis. The streamlined approach for the hybrid de novo genome assembly described in this protocol may be adapted for the use in any culturable bacteria.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere62872
JournalJournal of Visualized Experiments
Issue number174
StatePublished - Aug 2021
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)


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