Realtime data analysis for species identification using the MinION mobile sequencer
Dr Luana Lins
Species identification is pivotal for biosecurity, biomonitoring, environmental studies and many other areas. However, both morphological and molecular identifications are highly specialised and time-consuming tasks. To minimize the time required for molecular species identification, I developed a real-time data analysis tool for processing reads streamed from a MinION mobile sequencer. This tool focuses on simplicity of use and the ability to evaluate results as the reads are generated. This provides not only the fastest diagnose possible, but also enables the user to stop the sequencing run as soon as the species identification is statistically significant, thereby enabling the user to wash and reuse the flowcell to save resources. The software also allows the user to choose how many top matches are to be visualised giving an overall idea of the quality and significance of the matches.
Combined with a simple wet lab protocol to obtain DNA barcode amplicons, this software empowers even non-specialists to obtain a molecular species identification within just a few hours.