scTyper: a comprehensive pipeline for the cell typing analysis of single-cell RNA-seq data

Recent advances in single-cell RNA sequencing (scRNA-seq) technology have enabled the identification of individual cell types, such as epithelial cells, immune cells, and fibroblasts, in tissue samples containing complex cell populations. Cell typing is one of the key challenges in scRNA-seq data analysis that is usually achieved by estimating the expression of cell marker genes. However, there is no standard practice for cell typing, often resulting in variable and inaccurate outcomes.

Researchers at Ajou University School of Medicine have developed a comprehensive and user-friendly R-based scRNA-seq analysis and cell typing package, scTyper. scTyper also provides a database of cell type markers, scTyper.db, which contains 213 cell marker sets collected from literature. These marker sets include but are not limited to markers for malignant cells, cancer-associated fibroblasts, and tumor-infiltrating T cells. Additionally, scTyper provides three customized methods for estimating cell-type marker expression, including nearest template prediction (NTP), gene set enrichment analysis (GSEA), and average expression values. DNA copy number inference method (inferCNV) has been implemented with an improved modification that can be used for malignant cell typing. The package also supports the data preprocessing pipelines by Cell Ranger from 10X Genomics and the Seurat package. A summary reporting system is also implemented, which may facilitate users to perform reproducible analyses.

Overall workflow of scTyper

Fig. 1

A schematic diagram of the workflow of scTyper for scRNA seq-based cell typing

Availability – https://github.com/omicsCore/scTyper

Choi JH, In Kim H, Woo HG. (2020) scTyper: a comprehensive pipeline for the cell typing analysis of single-cell RNA-seq data. BMC Bioinformatics 21(1):342. [article]

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