miRge 2.0 for comprehensive analysis of microRNA sequencing data

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Background: miRNAs play important roles in the regulation of gene expression. The rapidly developing field of microRNA sequencing (miRNA-seq; small RNA-seq) needs comprehensive, robust, user-friendly and standardized bioinformatics tools to analyze these large datasets. We present miRge 2.0, in which multiple enhancements were made towards these goals. Results: miRge 2.0 has become more comprehensive with increased functionality including a novel miRNA detection method, A-to-I editing analysis, integrated standardized GFF3 isomiR reporting, and improved alignment to miRNAs. The novel miRNA detection method uniquely uses both miRNA hairpin sequence structure and composition of isomiRs resulting in higher specificity for potential miRNA identification. Using known miRNA data, our support vector machine (SVM) model predicted miRNAs with an average Matthews correlation coefficient (MCC) of 0.939 over 32 human cell datasets and outperformed miRDeep2 and miRAnalyzer regarding phylogenetic conservation. The A-to-I editing detection strongly correlated with a reference dataset with adjusted R2 = 0.96. miRge 2.0 is the most up-to-date aligner with custom libraries to both miRBase v22 and MirGeneDB v2.0 for 6 species: human, mouse, rat, fruit fly, nematode and zebrafish; and has a tool to create custom libraries. For user-friendliness, miRge 2.0 is incorporated into bcbio-nextgen and implementable through Bioconda. Conclusions: miRge 2.0 is a redesigned, leading miRNA RNA-seq aligner with several improvements and novel utilities. miRge 2.0 is freely available at: https://github.com/mhalushka/miRge.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number275
JournalBMC Bioinformatics
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 23 2018


  • Alignment
  • IsomiR
  • MiRNA
  • Small RNA-seq

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Structural Biology
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics


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