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Rapid release of an easily accessible SARS-CoV-2 genome analysis pipeline

COVID-19 Research Area(s): Diagnostics, Genomics & Transmission Dynamics, Epidemiology & Public Health, Vaccines & Treatments

This project will create a simple open-source software package that will help analyze viral genomic data from the COVID-19 pandemic. This tool will be created by adapting an existing data analysis tool, funded by Genome BC, that has proved successful in identifying drug resistance in other viral diseases including HIV and Hepatitis C. By making it extremely easy to use, the team hopes that this new tool will be rapidly adopted by scientists around the world, even in areas with limited computational infrastructure. It will fill a gap in the analysis pipeline for SARS-CoV-2 virus genomes. Within a week of launch it is estimated that this tool will enable end users to contribute genomic data about the novel coronavirus to public repositories. By sharing this data publicly, researchers around the globe will be able to utilize this data to track the origins, geographic spread and evolution of the virus in real time. This genomic data will also be useful for the development for medications and vaccines for use against the virus.