Genomic Precision

 A SeraCare blog focused on precision medicine and advanced clinical diagnostics

Video: See How an EQA Improves Clinical Genomics Testing with Affordable Custom Reference Standards

Posted by Ram Santhanam on Mar 6, 2019 10:52:00 AM

Next-generation sequencing (NGS) has revolutionized how assay developers, laboratories, and clinicians are diagnosing, treating, and monitoring disease. As NGS panels grow to include an increasing number of important biomarkers, so too must the reference standards used for development, validation, and routine QC.

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Topics: NGS assays, NGS reference materials

Ground Control to Major Tom: Use Controls and Keep Your Assay Running On

Posted by Lorn Davis on Feb 28, 2019 9:55:47 AM

Labs that demonstrate best practice clinical next-generation sequencing (NGS) quality management programs utilize positive run controls, designed for this purpose, to monitor assay analytical performance across each step of the clinical NGS workflow. Common parameters for assessing the analytical performance of a clinical NGS run include sensitivity (true positives), specificity (true negatives),

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Topics: NGS assays, qc management, iQ NGS

Keys to Better Liquid Biopsy Assay Sensitivity – AMP Corporate Workshop Video

Posted by Sam Blier on Jan 24, 2019 10:30:00 AM

“So as everyone here is aware, I’m sure, detection of circulating tumor DNA is challenging. There’s very little of it, to start with.” Hardly a revolutionary statement by Tony Godfrey, PhD, (Associate Chair, Surgical Research and Associate Professor of Surgery, Boston University School of Medicine) but an important acknowledgement from a leading expert of the difficulty faced by laboratorians

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Topics: NGS, ctDNA, Amp, NGS assays, liquid biopsy, NGS reference materials

Developing a Rock-Solid Lung Cancer Assay, Part 2

Posted by Yves Konigshofer on Jul 2, 2018 4:45:00 PM

In a recent post, we discussed key considerations for designing a robust next-generation sequencing (NGS)-based lung cancer assay. Putting those plans into action in the development phase brings forth a new set of challenges. Through our experience developing NGS reference materials and the relationships we’ve built with assay developers of all stripes, we’ve identified those important factors and ways to navigate them. But before you begin designing and optimizing your assay, you should become very familiar with binomial and Poisson distributions and their use because the outcome of many analytical steps can be modeled and explained with them.

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Topics: Cancer, NGS, NGS assays, assay development, NGS reference materials, Lung Cancer

How A New Generation of ctDNA Reference Standards Are Enabling the Promise of Precision Medicine

Posted by Omo Clement, Ph.D. on Jun 14, 2018 10:00:00 AM

An important goal in cancer disease management is early detection. When detected early, disease progression can be significantly mitigated with a plethora of options (targeted therapy, chemotherapy, surgery, etc.) available to medical practitioners, to afford progression free survival and a higher quality of life. A great promise of liquid biopsies is the possibility of early detection of cancer long before clear evidence of lesions and tumor growth observable by imaging or other techniques.1 As proxy for solid tissue biopsies, plasma-based liquid biopsy application is rapidly gaining traction in cancer disease diagnosis, progression, monitoring, and in predicting resistance to treatment options.2

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Topics: Cancer, ctDNA, SeraSeq, NGS assays, liquid biopsy, ccfDNA, NGS reference materials, Clinical NGS Assays

Next-Generation QC Precision Metrics for Next-Generation Sequencing

Introducing the SeraCare Confidence Score, a comprehensive precision metric designed for NGS assays

Posted by Lorn Davis on Apr 16, 2018 4:00:00 PM

Introduction

There is an even greater onus to track quality control metrics for NGS assays because of the number of steps and elements that must successfully work together to produce consistent results. The Standards and Guidelines for Validating NGS Bioinformatics, published in January by AMP and CAP, highlight the importance of tracking QC metrics over time because “trends in these metrics can indicate an emerging issue with an NGS process that has not yet manifested itself in failed tests.”

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Topics: NGS assays, QC Challenges, NGS Management Software, QC Management Software, bioinformatics, Quality Management Systems, Clinical NGS Assays, qc management

An Efficient and Ultrasensitive NGS Solution for Profiling ctDNA [Poster Talk Video]

Posted by Trevor Brown on Mar 5, 2018 8:28:14 AM

SeraCare Customer Poster Talk Video with Data Presented by Asuragen

Next-generation sequencing (NGS) of liquid biopsies offers a minimally invasive alternative to solid tissue biopsies and a more holistic profile of intra- and inter-tumoral heterogeneity for therapy selection and disease monitoring. 

Watch the video and download this free poster to learn:
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Topics: ctDNA, NGS assays, liquid biopsy, next gen sequencing, NGS reference materials

Reliable Interpretation of NGS Data: New Poster Talk Video

Posted by Cynthia Hendrickson, CEO Directed Genomics on Feb 1, 2018 8:00:00 AM

The ability to rapidly and effectively evaluate the performance of customized next-generation sequencing (NGS) panels is critical to provide high-quality sequencing solutions to customers. New England Biolabs®, together with Directed Genomics®, is developing a new offering, NEBNext Direct® Custom Ready Panels, which will allow researchers to select from a large library of genes for which baits have been developed and optimized, thus enabling rapid deployment of customized target-enrichment panels. Directed Genomics has been collaborating with SeraCare Life Sciences in order to streamline the optimization and characterization of NEBNext Direct target enrichment panels. 

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Topics: NGS, SeraSeq, Amp, NGS assays, Variant Allele Frequencies, NGS reference materials, reference materials

3 Steps for Building a Bulletproof Clinical NGS Assay: Step 3

We’ve already covered the first two steps. In this article, we’ll look at the third one. Choosing the right reference material technology can help control the high validation and running costs of highly multiplexed assays.

Posted by Russell Garlick on Dec 8, 2017 10:30:00 AM

What does it mean for an NGS assay to be bulletproof and why does your lab need it?

In two previous blog articles (parts one and two), we’ve talked about the factors that go into making NGS assays that doctors can rely on to deliver targeted, lifesaving therapies to their patients. Bulletproof assays are the tests that make your lab a trusted name in the NGS field, a leader in a rapidly-growing market.

But, as we’ve written, genetic sequencing is complex, expensive, and time-consuming. Therefore, finding ways to do it more efficiently, while maintaining the quality of your tests, is in the best interests of your lab and its customers.

As a refresher, here are the three steps for building a bulletproof clinical NGS assay:

  1. Consulting with experts
  2. Outlining your validation and quality control (QC) strategies together
  3. Evaluating reference material options

We’ve already covered the first two steps. In this article, we’ll look at the third one. Choosing the right reference material technology can help control the high validation and running costs of highly multiplexed assays.

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Topics: NGS assays, fusion RNA, Clinical NGS Assays, qc management

The First Comprehensive Myeloid Cancer Reference Materials for NGS Assays

Evaluate your detection of key diagnostic, prognostic, and therapeutic markers

Posted by Ram Santhanam on Nov 8, 2017 4:30:00 PM

Myeloid cancers are “liquid” tumors that arise from the blood and bone marrow.  These diseases have undergone greater study and characterization than perhaps any other type of cancer, largely due to the ease of accessing these cancer cells via a blood draw rather than a tissue biopsy, as for solid tumors.  There are many different types and subtypes of these malignancies that are known to be caused by mutations in genes that encode proteins involved in cell signaling, transcription, epigenetic regulation, and splicing1

Before next-generation sequencing became available in the hematology/oncology clinic, high-resolution genetic analysis of myeloid cancers relied primarily upon site-specific methods such as Fluorescence in Situ Hybridization (FISH) and PCR-based assays.  And, while other methods such as karyotyping and array comparative genomic hybridization are indeed able to survey large genomic rearrangements and copy number changes across the entire genome, these methods lack the resolution required for detection of many mutations that are important for myeloid cancers.

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Topics: NGS, NGS assays, NGS reference materials, myeloid cancer reference materials, reference materials