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Genetic warning system for future epidemics

Genetic warning system for future epidemics

The UK is developing technology to monitor genetic changes in respiratory viruses, and it should serve as an early warning system for dangerous virus variants and future pandemics.

A British research team at the Wellcome Sanger Institute in Cambridgeshire is developing technology for global monitoring of a wide range of viruses, according to reports. Watchman.

You will find dangerous viral variants

The goal is for the technology to include the influenza virus, RS virus, various coronaviruses, and previously unknown pathogens.

This technology will monitor genetic changes in respiratory viruses circulating around the world and will be used to find dangerous viral variants.

Monitors the entire gene pool

The Respiratory Virus and Microbiome Initiative project aims to create a system that uses DNA sequencing technology to identify all viruses, bacteria and fungi in a single nasal sample from a patient.

“The UK has been at the forefront of genomic surveillance for Covid-19 and has been responsible for around 20 per cent of all Sars-CoV-2 genomes sequenced across the planet during the pandemic,” Ewan Harrison for the Guardian.

He leads the project at the Sanger Institute, a world-leading center for genetic research and DNA sequencing.

Global surveillance must be built

“The knowledge and the data we’ve created have allowed us to track, with unprecedented speed and accuracy, the virus responsible for Covid-19, and monitor how it changes,” he told the Guardian.

He went on to say that it has been a great tool to help fight the disease and that they now aim to help build global genetic surveillance for all respiratory viruses.

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He adds that, after all, it is likely that respiratory viruses are the ones most likely to cause new epidemics.

The pandemic showed the potential

It was the use of genomic research during a pandemic that demonstrated the huge potential of the technology.

When there was a sudden sharp increase in virus cases in the southeast of England in December 2020, technology showed that it was due to the emergence of a more infectious viral variant called Sarz-CoV-2 Alpha.

We generated the genomic data very quickly and we could see that this variant was transmitted at a very high rate. Suddenly the world could see what genomics could do. “It allows you to see changes in viruses much faster than other methods, and now we’re going to harness that power,” Ewan Harrison told the Guardian.

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