miRNAseq for liquid biopsy: robust detection from the lowest sample amounts

microRNAs impact virtually all areas of biology including development, differentiation, signal transduction, infection, aging and disease. In circulation, these small noncoding regulatory RNAs are also promising biomarker candidates for both normal and disease biology. Found in virtually all biofluids including serum, plasma and cerebrospinal fluid, miRNAs are protected from degradation by exosomes, Ago2, HDL or other protective proteins. A challenge arises though that miRNAs are expressed at low levels in biofluids. As a result, expression analysis, particularly using next-generation sequencing (NGS), has proven to be difficult. Traditional small RNA library kits lack the sensitivity or specificity to adequately assess microRNA expression. Libraries prepared using these kits have been fraught with background products, such as adapter dimers and other RNAs, including hY4 Y RNA. These problems collectively manifest as a low mapping percentage to microRNA, a limited dynamic range and lost discovery potential. Recently, QIAGEN has released the QIAseq miRNA Library Kit that has been specifically designed to overcome the challenges associated with NGS library prep of microRNAs from biofluids. The innovative, gel-free workflow enables the preparation of robust libraries from even the most difficult, low RNA content biofluids. QIAseq miRNA maximizes your on-target microRNA reads, dynamic range and most importantly, your discovery potential.

Jonathan Shaffer, Ph.D.

Jonathan M. Shaffer
Dr. Shaffer joined QIAGEN in 2009 and has since worked with various technology development groups, the most recent being miRNA technologies. He received his Ph.D. in biochemistry and molecular genetics from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine in 2008 where his research focused on determining the mechanisms that regulate non-receptor tyrosine kinase expression and activity. Dr. Shaffer did his postdoctoral training at SABiosciences Corporation, now part of QIAGEN. Currently, Dr. Shaffer is a Senior Scientist in Product Development at QIAGEN.