Next-generation sequencing is a recently developed and highly advanced method of DNA sequencing. It is a powerful method that is capable of sequencing millions of DNA molecules in one day!
Before we dive into more information, let’s first understand what DNA sequencing is.
Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) stores hereditary information in the nucleus of the cell. It is made up of nucleotides that consists of three components:
• Deoxyribose Sugar
• Phosphate Backbone
• Nitrogen Base- Adenine(A), Guanine(G), Thymine(T) and Cytosine(C)
DNA sequencing is a technique used to record the exact sequence of nucleotides (A, C, G, and T) in a DNA molecule. This sequence of nucleotides, when determined, can help scientists to figure the protein that will emerge from it.
DNA sequencing techniques have been around for a long time. The first sequencing method ever used was in 1977 which was known as the Sanger Sequencing method. A few decades later, scientists came up with a new technique called Shotgun Sequencing which helped scientists sequence the human genome.
However, both these methods were time-consuming and often proved to be inefficient in terms of accuracy and precision. Next-Generation Sequencing is a coming-of-age sequencing method capable of sequencing millions of DNA molecules simultaneously. It offers ultra-high throughput, scalability, and speed and can be used to determine the order of nucleotides in entire genomes or selected regions of DNA or RNA.
Following are few examples of how NGS has been utilized to make breakthrough discoveries:
• Comparison of genomes between severely and mildly ill COVID-19 patients to determine susceptibility
• To study cancer cells to their cores
• To study rare diseases
Eurofins Genomics in India has surpassed biotechnological barriers in the country by introducing Next Generation Sequencing methods in their labs!