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New Horizons in Genomics

As many as 10 parallel or simultaneous whole-genome sequencing processes can be implemented cost-effectively through the application of the new high-capacity DNA sequencing equipment that has been installed recently to operate at Genomic Medicine and Bioinformatics Core Facility of the UD.

The recent explosive growth and development in high throughput genetic analyses have made it possible by now to acquire information on complex biological systems in a relatively fast and cost-effective way and in a much broader spectrum than before.

“These advanced technologies open up new vistas and perspectives in the diagnostics and the study of genetic diseases while they also lead to a better understanding of their underlying patho-mechanisms. It is especially the development of genomic analyses that has come to the center of attention lately because, today, the whole genetic map of a patient can be identified through genomic sequencing,” said József Tőzsér, Vice Rector for Health Industry Innovation and Training at the University of Debrecen to hirek.unideb.hu.

The Director of Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at the Faculty of Medicine added that the Genomic Medicine and Bioinformatics Core Facility of the University of Debrecen, as well as its Department of Clinical Genetics, had long provided genomic services and technologies for the researchers and clinical specialists working at the university. As a result of a cooperation agreement signed with the largest genomic corporation in the world, the China-based Bejing Genomics Institute, the recent acquisition of the high-capacity DNA-sequencing equipment (MGI DNBSEQ G400), installed and tested by the Chinese company MGI, will expand the range of these possibilities; therefore, whole-genome sequencing will be also available in Debrecen.

“The University of Debrecen has always been at the vanguard of innovation in the field of molecular genetics. The recent equipment acquisition is aimed to complement the currently available capacity of low and medium throughput techniques in sequencing with a high throughput device. With the help of the DNA sequencing technology developed by MGI, it will be possible to sequence and map as many as ten whole human genomes at the same time in a cost-effective fashion,” said the Vice Rector. 

In clinical genetics practice, the device will also serve the purposes of diagnostics: it will allow for identifying the cause factors for rare diseases, while diagnostic and predictive data for forecasting the effects of medicines will also be accessible through the experiments conducted.

“In addition to the medical applications, the equipment also opens up several new perspectives and further strengthens the regional genomic and genetic research and development. With the help of this instrument, complex genomic analyses also in the field of agriculture can be carried out in Hungary, too,” said the professor.

The conditions required for operating the new piece of equipment are going to guaranteed and taken care of by two university excellence focus area programs (Biotechnology and Big Data).

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