Maria Y. Giovanni
Assistant Director for Microbial Genomics & Advanced Technology
The NIAID-funded Influenza Genome Sequencing Project is a collaborative effort designed to increase the genome knowledge base of influenza and help researchers understand how flu viruses evolve, spread, and cause disease.
The sequencing effort, conducted in part by the NIAID Genome Sequencing Center at the J. Craig Venter Institute (JCVI), is revealing complete genetic blueprints of thousands of known human and avian influenza viruses. NIAID will rapidly make this sequence information publicly available through GenBank (an international, searchable online database funded by the National Institutes of Health) and the Influenza Research Database (a Web-accessible collection of genetic sequence information accompanied by data analysis tools).
By putting critical genome knowledge in the public domain, project leaders hope to provide researchers with the infrastructure needed to develop new vaccines, therapies, and diagnostics, and improve understanding of the overall molecular evolution of influenza and other genetic factors that determine their virulence.
Such knowledge could not only help mitigate the impact of annual influenza epidemics but also could improve scientific knowledge of the emergence of pandemic flu viruses.
Potential collaborators with viruses to sequence are encouraged to submit a reagent request.
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Last Updated October 29, 2009