RNA‐sequencing (RNA‐seq) is the state‐of‐the‐art technique for transcriptome analysis that takes advantage of high‐throughput next‐generation sequencing. Although being a powerful approach, RNA‐seq imposes major challenges throughout its steps with numerous caveats. There are currently many experimental options available, and a complete comprehension of each step is critical to make right decisions and avoid getting into inconclusive results. A complete workflow consists of: (1) experimental design; (2) sample and library preparation; (3) sequencing; and (4) data analysis. RNA‐seq enables a wide range of applications such as the discovery of novel genes, gene/transcript quantification, and differential expression and functional analysis. This chapter will encompass the main aspects from sample preparation to downstream data analysis. It will be discussed how to obtain high‐quality samples, replicates amount, library preparation, sequencing platforms and coverage, focusing on best recommended practices based on specialized literature. Basic techniques and well‐known algorithms are presented and discussed, guiding both beginners and experienced users in the implementation of reliable experiments.
Part of the book: Applications of RNA-Seq and Omics Strategies