Noblis Scientists Discover Unique Genetic Sequences of Novel Coronavirus; Amr ElSawy Quoted

Jeff Brody
Amr ElSawy

Noblis scientists, working alongside researchers from the Defense Biological Product Assurance Office, have identified four genetic sequences that are unique to the novel coronavirus that emerged in Wuhan, China, in late 2019.

Scientists used a Noblis application called BioLaboro to compare four polymerase chain reaction assays used to detect the virus with those from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and a German group and found that the four identified sequences were in different locations across the genome, the company said Wednesday.

“Noblis is pleased to collaborate with our customers to accelerate the virus detection process and combat the coronavirus outbreak,” said Amr ElSawy, president and CEO of Noblis and a two-time Wash100 award winner.

ElSawy added the company’s scientists and technical experts are using bioinformatics, advanced analytics and high-performance computing platforms for biosurveillance in support of global public health and safety.

Noblis noted the data could aid the development of new diagnostics for the coronavirus disease, now officially known as COVID-19.

Noblis and DBPAO, a component of the Joint Program Executive Office for Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Defense, are continuously assessing the effectiveness of existing PCR assays to track signature erosion in tests or decline in assay performance due to changes in the virus’ genetic sequences.

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