IDSA and ASM discuss SARS-CoV-2 sequencing

Nov. 11, 2021

A new joint consensus review from the Infectious Diseases Society of America and the American Society for Microbiology outlines the potential role of SARS-CoV-2 sequencing in clinical care and the challenges in implementing this process in laboratories.

The review was published recently in Clinical Infectious Diseases and the Journal of Clinical Microbiology and described in a news release.

“Although clinical uses of SARS-CoV-2 sequencing are currently limited, rapidly changing technology and the ability to interpret variants in near real-time suggests a growing role for SARS-CoV-2 genotyping in caring for patients as data emerge on vaccine and therapeutic efficacy,” said Francesca M. Lee, MD, Associate Professor in the Division of Infectious Diseases and Geographic Medicine in the Departments of Pathology and Internal Medicine at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas. Lee also is an author of the review and a member of IDSA’s Diagnostic Committee.

The IDSA notes, “With more than 2 million SARS-CoV-2 genomes sequenced so far during the pandemic, this testing has provided critical information about the lineages and evolution of the virus that has supported the public health response." The new review describes several potential clinical applications of this testing process, including for screening immunocompromised COVID-19 patients being considered for monoclonal antibody therapy and for infection prevention efforts in health care facilities using whole genome sequencing.

The new article also outlines related issues, from assay validation and regulatory requirements to clinical reporting for laboratories and emerging challenges in clinical SARS-CoV-2 sequencing.

Visit IDSA for more news

More on COVID