Biclustering of transcriptome sequencing data reveals human tissue-specific circular RNAs

Yu-Chen Liu, Yu-Jung Chiu, Jian-Rong Li, Chuan-Hu Sun, Chun-Chi Liu, Hsien-Da Huang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Background: Emerging evidence has been experimentally confirmed the tissue-specific expression of circRNAs (circRNAs). Global identification of human tissue-specific circRNAs is crucial for the functionality study, which facilitates the discovery of circRNAs for potential diagnostic biomarkers.

Results: In this study, circRNA back-splicing junctions were identified from 465 publicly available transcriptome sequencing samples. The number of reads aligned to these identified junctions was normalized with the read length and sequence depth for each sample. We generated 66 models representing enriched circRNAs among human tissue transcriptome through biclustering algorithm. The result provides thousands of newly identified human tissue-specific circRNAs.

Conclusions: This result suggests that expression of circRNAs is not prompted by random splicing error but serving molecular functional roles. We also identified circRNAs enriched within circulating system, which, along with identified tissue-specific circRNAs, can serve as potential diagnostic biomarkers.
Original languageEnglish
Article number958
JournalBMC Genomics
StatePublished - 19 Jan 2018


  • Tissue specificity; circRNA; Biclustering

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