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What happens to samples after sequencing

A video of four researchers from Bangladesh, Brazil, India and Nigeria discussing the final destination of samples in their facilities.

We invited leading scientists from Bangladesh, Brazil, India and Nigeria to share their knowledge and experiences implementing SARS-CoV-2 sequencing in their institutions. Watch Dr Senjuti Saha, Prof Paola Resende, Dr Murali Dharan Bashyam and Prof Christian Happi discussing what the final destination of sequenced samples is in their facilities.

The storage of samples will be guided by local and regional ethical approval and regulation. For example, in the UK, COG-UK consortium laboratories had to destroy all primary viral samples by March 2022 but could retain stored nucleic acids until September 2022 without applying for additional approval. Public Health Agencies will have more flexibility in the length of their sample storage than Academic institutions, however the sheer number of samples generated during this pandemic means that physical storage space is a significant barrier to keeping all samples long-term. Clinical samples should be kept long enough for re-testing of failed or important samples if required and a selection of important samples (different lineages, CT values, priority settings) kept longer term for research and development.

Biobanking of samples has been widely utilised during the pandemic, but with this comes many ethical considerations, particularly when considering the interactions between high income countries and other partners to avoid biopiracy.

Let us know in the comments what happens to sequenced samples in your laboratories

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A Practical Guide for SARS-CoV-2 Whole Genome Sequencing

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