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Thursday, February 16, 2017

AGBT 2017, Day 2: Diploid Genomes, Deep Learning, and the PacBio Workshop

The second day of AGBT featured a number of great talks and posters, and also our user workshop called “Covering All the Bases with SMRT Sequencing.” We’d like to thank the hundreds of attendees who crowded into the room for this event! The workshop kicked off with Nezih Cereb, CEO of Histogenetics, who spoke about using long-read PacBio sequencing for typing HLA class I and II genes, which are important for applications such as matching organ transplants to recipients. The company has been performing industrial-scale SMRT Sequencing since it first acquired its PacBio RS II instrument, but recently increased capacity…

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Wednesday, February 15, 2017

AGBT 2017, Day 1: Infectious Disease and Improved Genome Assemblies

We’re thrilled to be at the AGBT conference this week, taking place this year in Hollywood, Fla. On the first full day of the meeting, everyone’s mandatory wristbands look shiny and new (we suspect by the end of the week they’ll be as wilted as us). And we’ve even been getting that work/life balance down thanks to some beach volleyball with our friends from BioNano Genomics and Swift Biosciences. At the opening session on Monday, Eimear Kenny from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai showed why it’s essential to fully understand natural genetic diversity in a fascinating talk…

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Sunday, February 12, 2017

Staying on Top of Long-Read Sequencing at AGBT 2017

We’re heading cross-country to the Advances in Genome Biology and Technology (AGBT) Meeting starting Monday in sunny Hollywood, Florida. There will be several great opportunities to learn about how scientists are using SMRT Sequencing and the Sequel System throughout the meeting, and we hope you have time to enjoy at least a few. We’ll be hosting a one-hour workshop on Wednesday, February 15th, at 3:30 pm in the Grand Ballroom. Speakers will include Calico’s Margaret Roy, sharing her experience using the Sequel System for de novo sequencing of the naked mole-rat genome; Nezih Cereb of Histogenetics, discussing high-throughput HLA Class…

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Wednesday, February 8, 2017

PAG Workshop: Wide Breadth of Research Benefiting from SMRT Sequencing

If you didn’t get to the Plant and Animal Genome meeting this year, you missed a great workshop featuring SMRT Sequencing users and the fascinating projects they’re working on across plant, animal, agricultural, and conservation sciences and human health. Here are quick summaries of each talk, with full video recordings available for more detail. Our event kicked off with PacBio CSO Jonas Korlach welcoming attendees and delivering an update on the genomics community’s impressive advances with SMRT Sequencing. There are now more than 2,000 publications citing the PacBio long-read technology — a rate of about 30 per week. He also…

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Thursday, February 2, 2017

Toward a Gold Standard for Human Structural Variation

Scientists from the University of Washington and McDonnell Genome Institute recently reported in Genome Research the results of an in-depth assessment of structural variation in the human genome using SMRT Sequencing technology. They found far more variation than expected and suggest using this approach to establish a comprehensive database of structural variants that would aid future studies. “Discovery and genotyping of structural variation from long-read haploid genome sequence data” comes from lead author John Huddleston, senior author Evan Eichler, and collaborators. The team fully sequenced two haploid human cell lines (CHM1 and CHM13) with SMRT Sequencing to greater than 60-fold…

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Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Scientists Produce Reference Genome for Plasmodium, Update Phylogeny

A new Nature paper from scientists at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute and other institutions delves into two Plasmodium genomes and reveals novel information about how these parasites have evolved. SMRT Sequencing was used to generate a reference genome and high-quality draft assembly for the organisms, providing a clear picture of species that have previously been difficult to characterize. From lead author Gavin Rutledge, senior author Thomas Otto, and collaborators, “Plasmodium malariae and P. ovale genomes provide insights into malaria parasite evolution” reports that prior studies have “been hampered by a lack of genetic information” for species responsible for many malaria infections. The scientists deployed…

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