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Thursday, December 8, 2016

ASM SMRT Grant Winner: Squirrel Microbiome!

We’re pleased to announce the winner of this year’s SMRT Grant, which launched during the American Society for Microbiology annual meeting this summer. The grant program, co-sponsored by PacBio and the Institute for Genome Sciences (IGS), was very competitive, with over 100 submitted proposals. From this broad range of entries, our judges faced quite a task choosing just one recipient for the grant. Congratulations to Jessica Sieber from the University of Minnesota Duluth, who impressed reviewers with her proposal, “Metagenomic analysis of the gut microbiota of the 13-lined ground squirrel, a model fat storing hibernator.” Ground squirrels have been models…

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Wednesday, June 15, 2016

SMRTest Microbe Grant Program:
Nominate Your Favorite Microbe Now!

We’re pleased to launch the latest opportunity to have your favorite microbe sequenced on a PacBio System. The SMRTest Microbe Grant Program, kicking off at this year’s American Society for Microbiology annual meeting in Boston, will give one scientist a free genome sequence for his or her chosen microbe. For those folks unable to make it to the meeting this year, don’t worry — you do not need to attend ASM Microbe to enter the program. To enter, simply submit a short application describing your microbe or microbial community and how it would benefit from the long read lengths, high…

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Thursday, May 28, 2015

Microbial Madness: Talks, Posters, and SMRTest Microbe Grant Program at ASM 2015

For some people, Mardi Gras and beignets are big attractions in New Orleans — but for us it’s all about the annual conference of the American Society for Microbiology. With more than 8,000 attendees, ASM 2015 will take place at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center from May 30 to June 2 and will feature some of the leading scientists in the field. At 2:30 p.m. on Sunday, May 31, in La Nouvelle Orleans Ballroom B, Jing Li from Tsinghua University will discuss the detection and importance of three DNA methylation motifs in the genome of Streptococcus pneumonia. Shortly after,…

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Thursday, May 29, 2014

Research Studies Use Sequencing to Track Path of Infection Outbreaks

A talk at last week’s ASM conference continued the recent trend of scientists using Single Molecule, Real-Time (SMRT®) Sequencing in research projects designed to better understand the transmission path of hospital-acquired infections. The presentation, entitled “Tracking Hospital Patients and Environment with Complete Genome Sequencing of Carbapenem-Resistant Klebsiella pneumoniae and other Enterobacteriaceae,” came from Julie Segre, a chief investigator at the National Human Genome Research Institute. Segre spoke of Klebsiella as “the nightmare bug.” From the earliest reports of it in 2001, it is now in more than 40 states in the US and shows strong resistance to antibiotics. The study…

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Thursday, May 22, 2014

At ASM, Pioneering Scientists Presented Bacterial Methylome Highlights

This week’s annual meeting of the American Society for Microbiology was every bit as interesting, data-rich, and jam-packed as promised. We’re grateful to everyone who stopped by our booth and got to know more about Single Molecule, Real-Time (SMRT®) Sequencing. Our favorite session, “Bacterial Methylomes,” took place on the last day of the conference and was organized by Rich Roberts, Nobel laureate and Chief Scientific Officer at New England Biolabs. The session highlighted several projects analyzing genome-wide methylation states of bacteria, a task which has been all but impossible due to the technical inability to detect such base modifications. As…

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Thursday, May 15, 2014

American Society for Microbiology (ASM) Preview –
SMRTest Microbe Grant Program

We’re getting ready for next week’s annual meeting of the American Society for Microbiology. Thousands of microbiologists from around the world will be gathering in Boston for the event, which is widely recognized as the leading conference for the field. At last year’s ASM meeting, we hosted our first-ever grant program for scientists hoping to use Single Molecule, Real-Time (SMRT®) Sequencing for their microbe of interest. The winner for that SMRT Grant was Michael Nelson from the University of Connecticut. Nelson received free SMRT Cells and project support to sequence a putative novel Bacteroidete genus with importance to the digestive…

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Tuesday, April 8, 2014

GC-Rich Genome of Pandoraea Bacterium Assembled with SMRT Sequencing

Scientists from the Institute of Biological Sciences at the University of Malaya recently published a description of Pandoraea sp. strain RB-44 in Genome Announcements, a journal from the American Society for Microbiology. The genome sequence was completed using Single Molecule, Real-Time (SMRT®) Sequencing. Pandoraea is a soil bacterium; this particular strain was collected from the site of a former landfill. Some strains of Pandoraea have been suggested as cystic fibrosis clinical pathogens, the authors report, though “their role in pathogenicity is still largely unknown.” Corresponding author Kok-Gan Chan and colleagues may have a new lead in that mystery. Their Pandoraea…

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Monday, July 22, 2013

Whole-Genome Microbial Epigenetics: ASM Workshop videos highlight emerging application of SMRT Sequencing

We recently participated in a workshop on whole-genome microbial epigenetics at the American Society for Microbiology annual meeting in Denver. Using SMRT® Sequencing, the three most common types of bacterial methylation can be studied at base resolution across an entire genome. An exceptional lineup of speakers shared their latest research and we’re pleased to be able to share video of the presentations. Our CSO Jonas Korlach opened the workshop with a brief introduction describing how SMRT Sequencing generates epigenetic information. His presentation was followed by Brian Anton, from New England BioLabs, who presented data on restriction-modification systems and orphan methylases…

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Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Rapid Genome Assembly: Salmonella Outbreak Strain Sequenced and Closed in Less Than One Week

A newly reported Salmonella genome showcases the utility of single molecule, real-time (SMRT®) sequencing for characterizing a foodborne outbreak pathogen. The outbreak strain, Salmonella enterica subsp. enterica serovar Javiana (S. Javiana), representing one of the top five most common forms of Salmonella associated with fresh-cut produce, was sequenced and analyzed late last year; its genome was published this month in Genome Announcements, a journal from the American Society for Microbiology. The study was led by the US Food & Drug Administration’s Center for Food Safety & Applied Nutrition. Scientists from Pacific Biosciences and New England BioLabs participated in the study,…

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Tuesday, April 9, 2013

It’s a Very Microbial Season

This springtime, we’ve got microbes on the brain! The annual meeting of the American Society for Microbiology is just over a month away, so we’ve been thinking a lot about microbial genomics and how we can contribute to this burgeoning field.Microbiology is a key application for customers using the PacBio® RS. With its throughput, turnaround time, cost-effectiveness, and long reads, it is the perfect tool for performing de novo sequencing of microbes and generating closed genomes — often bringing microbial genomes together in a single contig. Beyond that, the unique way in which SMRT® Sequencing produces epigenetic data together with…

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Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Going to ASM? Register Now for the Microbial Epigenetics Workshop on May 18

If you’ll be heading to Denver for the American Society for Microbiology annual meeting on May 18-21, don’t miss the pre-conference workshop on whole-genome microbial epigenetics. New studies are continually demonstrating the importance of epigenetics in gene regulation and other biological functions of microbes, and this workshop features a panel of top-notch scientists to shed more light on these advances. Here’s the roster of presentations: Direct detection of bacterial epigenetics using SMRT Sequencing Jonas Korlach, Pacific Biosciences Comprehensive methylome analysis of the human gastric pathogen, Helicobacter pylori Sebastian Suerbaum, Hannover Medical School Large-scale analysis of restriction-modification systems using SMRT Sequencing…

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