PRESS RELEASE: Microbiome Insights launches new shallow shotgun sequencing service

VANCOUVER, CANADA – October 25, 2019 Accurate information on microbiome function and high-resolution taxonomy is very valuable for microbiome studies—but the high cost of shotgun metagenomic sequencing can be a barrier. Now Microbiome Insights, a global leader in microbiome analysis, gives clients a new option to address this limitation: a scientifically validated shallow shotgun metagenomic sequencing service offered at a cost comparable to 16S rRNA gene sequencing.

Pedro Dimitriu, Microbiome Insights’ Senior Director of Bioinformatics, led the R&D efforts for the new service. He says, "Our central question in developing our shallow shotgun protocol was whether we could modify existing library preparation parameters to obtain high resolution taxonomic information at a reduced price. We confirmed that we could do so; our internal validations confirmed the scientific robustness of the new protocol.”

“The development of this new service was prompted by what we heard from our clients,” says Microbiome Insights CEO Malcolm Kendall. “Some were having difficulty deciding whether to use 16S rRNA gene sequencing or shotgun metagenomic sequencing for their microbiome analysis. We are giving them a great new option that offers the best of both worlds, yielding high-quality data for a lower price.”

Kendall says published scientific work based on shallow shotgun microbiome analysis is likely to increase, as scientists look to maximize the information gleaned about the microbiome while making the most of their research budgets. Meanwhile, the offering enables industry clients enables to execute on their microbiome clinical programs more quickly and economically.

The Microbiome Insights lab is currently accepting samples for the new shallow shotgun metagenomic sequencing service.

About Microbiome Insights

Microbiome Insights, Inc. is a global leader providing end-to-end services for microbiome DNA sequencing, including state-of-the-art bioinformatic analysis. Based in Vancouver, Canada, the company's customized suite of services enables researchers and clinicians to easily and effectively include microbiome analysis in studies across a range of human, animal, agricultural, and environmental applications. The multidisciplinary team of researchers and knowledge leaders at the company's helm provide access to decades of expertise in traditional sciences such as ecology, microbiology, infectious diseases, and genetics. Microbiome Insights' award-winning team is committed to providing clients with fast, dependable, cost-effective results. Learn more:

Amplicon sequencing

Performed to determine the relative abundance of taxa in a community, and to compare the taxonomic profiling between groups of interest.

Shotgun metagenome sequencing

Performed for taxonomic profiling (diversity and abundance), as well as functional analysis.  This complex technique allows for parallel sequencing of DNA from all organisms within the community with high coverage for species level detection.

Shallow shotgun metagenome sequencing

Involves sequencing samples at a shallower depth than is traditionally applied to shotgun metagenome sequencing. By combining many more samples into a single sequencing run and using a modified protocol that uses less reagents for sequencing library preparation, it is performed to provide compositional and functional sequencing data similar to deep shotgun metagenome sequencing.

About Microbiome Insights

Microbiome Insights, Inc. is a global leader providing end-to-end microbiome sequencing and comprehensive bioinformatic analysis. The company is headquartered in Vancouver, Canada where samples from around the world are processed in its College of American Pathologist (CAP) accredited laboratory. Working with clients from pharma, biotech, nutrition, cosmetic and agriculture companies as well as with world leading academic and government research institutions, Microbiome Insights has supported over 925 microbiome studies from basic research to commercial R&D and clinical trials. The company's team of expert bioinformaticians and data scientists deliver industry leading insights including biomarker discovery, machine-learning based modelling and customized bioinformatics analysis.