Future Priorities and Action Areas for NGS Research Identified at ASM NGS Coalition Meeting

Feb. 16, 2017

Washington, DC – February 16, 2017 – Next-Generation Sequencing (NGS), also known as high-throughput sequencing, a modern technique for sequencing genomes at high speed, has become increasingly significant across many fields of microbiology. Understanding this trend, the American Academy of Microbiology (AAM), the honorific leadership group within the American Society for Microbiology, established an NGS Coalition to prioritize action areas for future research. 

The NGS Coalition established practical, action-oriented solutions to overcome current barriers to conducting NGS research across various scientific disciplines, including clinical, biomedical, forensic, environmental, and agricultural sciences. 

A diverse NGS Steering Committee of experts was responsible for determining a strategic, stepwise approach for addressing each of the disciplines.The NGS Steering Committee meeting, which convened in September 2016, identified action areas for the NGS Coalition to focus on: surveillance, research gaps and priorities, bioinformatics, and communication and outreach. Action items and needs to address included the need for quality control of NGS, funding to address barriers to implementing NGS in clinical settings, improved automated data analysis techniques, a need to encourage commercial partnerships for NGS product development, and communication with Congress and the general public on NGS research. 

A summary of these findings is now available.