New Computational Tool Devised To Track COVID-19 Mutations World-Wide
Researchers from Mumbai’s Homi Bhabha National Institute have devised a novel computational tool that can ascertain the origin of emerging variants of coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2).
This advanced tool facilitates scientists all around the world to monitor any new mutations of concern.
The article published in the journal, the Briefings in Bioinformatics, describes the tool, IPD (Infectious Pathogen Detector), and how it can be employed to carry out an integrated examination of multiple genomic datasets.
For generating an automated report on the novel coronavirus genome sequences devoid of any previous computational whereabouts, researchers are offered this new tool online for free.
Amit Dutt, the corresponding writer of the article mentioned that the computational tool was initially devised to discern pathogens linked with the cancer genome.
Dutt informed ThePrint that there is a method called computational subtraction. This comprises genome sequencing of tumor specimens and afterward computationally eliminating whatever that is found matching with the human reference genome.
He added that all the remnants are carefully studied to detect what they are. This enables the determination of the role of pathogens in cancer.
The tool offers information on lineage, mutations, and abundance
In July 2020, the team determined to include the SARS-CoV-2 module into the computational tool.
Dutt claimed that they collected sample sets- one prior to the outbreak and the other after the outbreak started.
He included that they attempted to find whether there were any incidents of SARS-CoV-2 genomic sequence in tumor samples prior to the declaration of coronavirus outbreak.
This enabled the verification that SARS-CoV-2 indeed was a novel genomic sequence that previously didn’t exist.
The tool produces an automated report for every single sample that offers details on three aspects- lineage, mutations, and abundance.
Dutt stated that it determines the abundance of SARS-CoV-2 sequence within one’s sample, indicating the viral load present in the person.
The tool likewise studies the genomic sequence within the sample with the original sequence collected from Wuhan, which is considered as a reference, in order to determine the mutations.
Dutt proclaimed that gradually one can retrieve samples from various months and the automated system can describe the mutations that have accumulated over the course of time.
After that, the system additionally deduces the phylogenetic clade or the lineage of the novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) samples. Lineage delineates a set of mutations over a period of time that enables researchers to trace the whereabouts of the newly evolved variant.
This device automates the examination of SARS-CoV-2 genomic sequences from all around the world.
New Computational Tool To Track COVID-19, COVID-19 Mutation Tracker
Also Read: Notable Variants & Mutations Of SARS-CoV-2