Snapshot: Propelled by Next-Gen Sequencing, MDx Gains on Antimicrobial Resistance

August 3, 2015
Snapshot: Propelled by Next-Gen Sequencing, MDx Gains on Antimicrobial Resistance
With NGS diagnostics, the onus on the lab is shifted considerably from hypothesis-driven diagnosis to the interpretation of more data-rich results. [© ktsdesign/Fotolia]

Emil Salazar

If molecular diagnostic tests are to keep pace with fast-evolving microbes, they will have to find an “extra gear.” Existing gears—single pathogen tests and multiplexed panels—have their advantages, mostly with respect to specificity. But specificity is of little help when one is chasing a moving target, as one is obliged to do when typing pathogens or profiling resistant strains. To keep up with such elusive quarry, molecular diagnostics may need to shift to next-generation sequencing (NGS).

Already, NGS is moving into the clinical laboratory, improving the responsiveness of disease control in healthcare settings, and promising to advance the personalization of patient therapy. And now NGS is poised to go yet farther, nimbly bypassing obstacles that have slowed molecular testing’s progress.

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