Oxford Nanopore supports COVID-19 pandemic: epidemiology and research

Oxford Nanopore is working with public health laboratories around the world, and researchers in related areas, to support the current COVID-19 pandemic.  This includes rapid sequencing of the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 – the virus that causes COVID-19, as well as approaches that characterise a broader range of pathogens in a sample.

A large number of scientists, from large centralised labs to smaller decentralised ones, are using nanopore sequencing to support rapid sharing of SARS-CoV-2 sequence data.  Rapid data sharing has been key to the public health response, and researchers all over the world have been fast to share the genomes they have sequenced on public databases such as GISAID, GenBank or elsewhere.

As numbers of cases increased, laboratories have built capacity to sequence larger numbers of the genomes, typically progressing from using the MinION device to the GridION device for sequencing. Thousands of genomes sequenced using nanopore technology are now available in public databases.

Due to the extensive amount of work in this area, we have created a COVID-19 mini-site, that includes: extensive research and epidemiology performed by researchers in the nanopore community and guidance on how to use nanopore sequencing