DEBay: a computational tool for deconvolution of quantitative PCR data for estimation of cell type-specifc gene expression in a mixed population
The expression of a gene is commonly estimated by quantitative PCR (qPCR) using RNA isolated from a large number of pooled cells. Such pooled samples often have subpopulations of cells with different levels of expression of the target gene. Estimation of gene expression from an ensemble of cells obscures the pattern of expression in different subpopulations. Physical separation of various subpopulations is a demanding task. We have developed a computational tool, Deconvolution of Ensemble
... n of Ensemble through Bayes-approach (DEBay), to estimate cell type-specific gene expression from qPCR data of a mixed population. DEBay estimates Normalized Gene Expression Coefficient (NGEC), which is a relative measure of the expression of the target gene in each cell type in a population. NGEC has a direct algebraic correspondence with the normalized fold change in gene expression measured by qPCR. DEBay can deconvolute both time-dependent and -independent gene expression profiles. It uses the Bayesian method of model selection and parameter estimation. We have evaluated DEBay using synthetic and real experimental data. DEBay is implemented in Python. A GUI of DEBay and its source code are available for download at SourceForge (https://sourceforge.net/projects/debay).