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This Week in Nature: Oct 18, 2013

In Nature this week, a research team from Washington University reports on the results of an analysis of data from The Cancer Genome Atlas Pan-Cancer project, identifying mutations in a range of genes across a number of different cancer types. The scientists looked at single-nucleotide mutations and small indels from 3,281 tumors across 12 tumor types, and found 127 significantly mutated genes involved in cellular processes with both established and emerging links to cancer. Additional analysis identified genes with a significant impact on patient survival and potentially temporal order of mutational events during tumor development.

GenomeWeb Daily News has more on this here.

Meanwhile, in Nature Biotechnology, scientists from Stanford University publish the results of a single-molecule long-read survey of the human transcriptome. Using sequencing technology from Pacific Biosciences, they were able to sequence the polyadenylated RNA complement of a pooled set of 20 human organs and tissues without the need for fragmentation or amplification. Full-length RNA molecules of up to 1.5 kilobaes could be readily monitored with "little sequence loss at the 5' ends." The data demonstrate the feasibility of deep sequencing full-length RNA from complex eukaryotic transcriptomes on a single-molecule level.