A protocol for RNA methylation differential analysis with MeRIP-Seq data and exomePeak R/Bioconductor package

Jia Meng, Zhiliang Lu, Hui Liu, Lin Zhang, Shaowu Zhang, Yidong Chen, Manjeet K. Rao, Yufei Huang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

231 Scopus citations


Despite the prevalent studies of DNA/Chromatin related epigenetics, such as, histone modifications and DNA methylation, RNA epigenetics has not drawn deserved attention until a new affinity-based sequencing approach MeRIP-Seq was developed and applied to survey the global mRNA N6-methyladenosine (m6A) in mammalian cells. As a marriage of ChIP-Seq and RNA-Seq, MeRIP-Seq has the potential to study the transcriptome-wide distribution of various post-transcriptional RNA modifications.We have previously developed an R/Bioconductor package 'exomePeak' for detecting RNA methylation sites under a specific experimental condition or the identifying the differential RNA methylation sites in a case control study from MeRIP-Seq data. Compared with other relatively well studied data types such as ChIP-Seq and RNA-Seq, the study of MeRIP-Seq data is still at very early stage, and existing protocols are not optimized for dealing with the intrinsic characteristic of MeRIP-Seq data. We therein provide here a detailed and easy-to-use protocol of using exomePeak R/Bioconductor package along with other software programs for analysis of MeRIP-Seq data, which covers raw reads alignment, RNA methylation site detection, motif discovery, differential RNA methylation analysis, and functional analysis. Particularly, the rationales behind each processing step as well as the specific method used, the best practice, and possible alternative strategies are briefly discussed.The exomePeak R/Bioconductor package is freely available from Bioconductor: http://www.bioconductor.org/packages/release/bioc/html/exomePeak.html.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)274-281
Number of pages8
Issue number3
StatePublished - Oct 1 2014


  • Differential RNA methylation
  • ExomePeak
  • MeRIP-Seq
  • N6-methyladenosine (m6A)
  • RNA methylation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • Molecular Biology


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