Budget-Friendly Software for Virus

Budget-Friendly Software for Virus & Bacteria Genome Studies

Detection of emerging variants of viruses and bacteria is hampered by a shortage of skilled analysts and high-end equipment, which slows down the process of analyzing vast amounts of lab data. Accurate information about the infecting microorganisms is crucial for effective treatment and surveillance measures. Currently, the identification of these variants is primarily conducted in large labs that are equipped with bioinformatics tools and large servers.

During the Covid pandemic, Genotypic Technology, a company based in Bengaluru, initiated trials of a cost-effective offline software solution known as Commander at CSIR-NEERI‘s lab while conducting RT-PCR tests. This software has enabled smaller ICMR labs to identify variants in Covid samples and upload them to the INSACOG database. It simplifies the process of genome study by allowing biologists, clinicians, or researchers to input the data while the software handles the remaining tasks.

Traditional genome sequencing processes require the expertise of a bioinformatician to analyze the data using specialized tools. However, Commander, a graphic user interface (GUI), streamlines the complex computational functions necessary for understanding genome sequencing results. By replacing or reducing the reliance on a bioinformatician, Commander significantly reduces the time required for analysis. The

software is available at an annual cost of around Rs1 lakh.

Due to the limited mathematical and advanced computer skills of many scientists, sequencing work is typically centralized in larger facilities. However, Commander empowers researchers to explore the field of genomics by performing complex bioinformatics functions on existing platforms. This software provides valuable genetic information about various viruses.

Dr. Krishna Khairnar, the head of NEERI’s environmental virology cell, described Commander as a groundbreaking tool. CSIR-NEERI validated the prototype of Commander in their lab and provided multiple feedback to enhance its functionality. After collaborating with the software developers during the development stage, Commander has evolved into a robust and highly effective tool that is now used not only in India but also in various parts of the world. Although initially designed for research purposes in their lab, Commander has proven its utility in studying not only Covid but also other types of bacteria and viruses.

Dr. Raja, the founder of Genotypic Technology, mentioned that the software is not only applicable to Covid research but can also be used for studying different types of bacteria and viruses. He added that Commander is now being utilized in the United States and several Asian countries, including Sri Lanka and Pakistan.

Budget-Friendly Software for Virus & Bacteria Genome Studies

Shekhar Suman is the Co-founder of BioTecNika Info Labs Pvt. Ltd. He is an Entrepreneur, Writer, Public Speaker, and a Motivational Coach. In his career, he has mentored more than 100,000+ students toward success in the Biopharma Industry. He heads the BioTecNika Group, which comprises BioTecNika.com, BioTecNika.org, and Rasayanika.com. An avid reader and listener who is passionate about BioSciences. Today Biotecnika is India's largest Biotech Career portal, with over 5 Million subscribers from academia & Industry. It's ranked among the top 50 websites worldwide in the Biology category.