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MAUI-seq: Metabarcoding using amplicons with unique molecular identifiers to improve error correction
  • +2
  • Bryden Fields,
  • Sara Moeskjær,
  • Ville Friman,
  • Stig Andersen,
  • J. Peter Young
Bryden Fields
University of York
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Sara Moeskjær
Aarhus Universitet
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Ville Friman
University of York
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Stig Andersen
Aarhus Universitet
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J. Peter Young
University of York
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Abstract

Background: Sequencing and PCR errors are a major challenge when characterising genetic diversity using high-throughput amplicon sequencing (HTAS). Results: We have developed a multiplexed HTAS method, MAUI-seq, which uses unique molecular identifiers (UMIs) to improve error correction by exploiting variation among sequences associated with a single UMI. We show that two main advantages of this approach are efficient elimination of chimeric and other erroneous reads, outperforming DADA2 and UNOISE3, and the ability to confidently recognise genuine alleles that are present at low abundance or resemble chimeras. Conclusions: The method provides sensitive and flexible profiling of diversity and is readily adaptable to most HTAS applications, including microbial 16S rRNA profiling and metabarcoding of environmental DNA.