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SEATTLE, Feb. 25, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Phase Genomics, the leader in proximity ligation-based genomic solutions, announced today a year-long grant awarded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to develop an improved computational method for extracting genomic information from complex microbiome samples. The new tool will help researchers discover new microbes and understand how microbial strains are passed between mothers and infants.
Leveraging the unique capabilities of its metagenomic proximity ligation technology, Phase Genomics is developing a new software platform to vastly improve the resolution of microbiome studies relative to current methods. Once implemented, this new tool will identify new species and strains of gut microbes and reveal how they colonize mother and child with an unprecedented level of detail.
Dr. Ivan Liachko, CEO and Co-Founder of Phase Genomics, commented, “The technology we’re developing, we believe, will improve the quality and accuracy of microbiome analysis by nearly every relevant metric. We also anticipate that our platform will lower the cost of metagenome assembly and put this powerful culture-free technology within reach of healthcare and research leaders in developing countries.”
The new platform will allow scientists to better identify species and strains of bacteria that cannot be cultured or detected with standard methods. The information gained from the application of this technology will help understand how factors like differing diets, environmental conditions and medical treatments impact the transmission of gut microbes from mother to infant. Utilizing Phase Genomics’ technology will further enable researchers in developing countries’ to access groundbreaking new metagenomic tools to inform public health and safety policies at lower costs, and with higher quality than ever before.
“The impact of the microbiome on human health is broad-ranging, but the mechanism is poorly understood,” said Dr. Justin Sonnenburg, Associate Professor of Microbiology & Immunology at Stanford University and Phase Genomics collaborator. “By collaborating with Phase Genomics on the development of metagenomic proximity-ligation technology we hope to increase our understanding of the microbes that impact human health, with a focus on understudied samples from the developing world. Our goal is to produce a tool that will make the highest resolution microbiome analysis accessible to researchers around the globe.”
Today’s news follows the recent release of two papers highlighting new discoveries about tracking antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in the microbiome of wastewater and cow rumen. Using Phase Genomics’ proximity-ligation data analysis tool, ProxiMeta Hi-C, the research also led to the discovery of hundreds of previously unknown microorganism species.
Phase Genomics is currently involved in additional studies exploring and mapping the microbiome. Follow Phase Genomics on Twitter for developing news.
ABOUT PHASE GENOMICS – Phase Genomics applies Hi-C and other proximity-ligation methods to enable chromosome-scale genome assembly, metagenomic deconvolution, as well as analysis of structural genomic variation and genome architecture. They offer a comprehensive portfolio of laboratory and computational services and products, including Hi-C kits for plants, animals, microbes, and human samples as well as industry-leading genome and metagenome assembly and analysis software.
Based in Seattle, WA, the company was founded in 2015 by a team of genome scientists, software engineers, and entrepreneurs. The company’s mission is to empower scientists with genomic tools that accelerate breakthrough discoveries.
Eric Schudiske Phase Genomics 2063103597 firstname.lastname@example.org