OSTRFPD: Multifunctional Tool for Genome-Wide Short Tandem Repeat Analysis for DNA, Transcripts, and Amino Acid Sequences with Integrated Primer Designer.
Mathema VB., Dondorp AM., Imwong M.
Microsatellite mining is a common outcome of the in silico approach to genomic studies. The resulting short tandemly repeated DNA could be used as molecular markers for studying polymorphism, genotyping and forensics. The omni short tandem repeat finder and primer designer (OSTRFPD) is among the few versatile, platform-independent open-source tools written in Python that enables researchers to identify and analyse genome-wide short tandem repeats in both nucleic acids and protein sequences. OSTRFPD is designed to run either in a user-friendly fully featured graphical interface or in a command line interface mode for advanced users. OSTRFPD can detect both perfect and imperfect repeats of low complexity with customisable scores. Moreover, the software has built-in architecture to simultaneously filter selection of flanking regions in DNA and generate microsatellite-targeted primers implementing the Primer3 platform. The software has built-in motif-sequence generator engines and an additional option to use the dictionary mode for custom motif searches. The software generates search results including general statistics containing motif categorisation, repeat frequencies, densities, coverage, guanine-cytosine (GC) content, and simple text-based imperfect alignment visualisation. Thus, OSTRFPD presents users with a quick single-step solution package to assist development of microsatellite markers and categorise tandemly repeated amino acids in proteome databases. Practical implementation of OSTRFPD was demonstrated using publicly available whole-genome sequences of selected Plasmodium species. OSTRFPD is freely available and open-sourced for improvement and user-specific adaptation.