Aperiomics delivers the most scientifically advanced microbial identification available today. Learn more about the powerful science behind our sequencing technology.
Metagenomic sequencing is a form of next-generation sequencing (NGS) that allows Aperiomics to examine all the microorganisms present in any given sample. Every bit of the genetic information contained within the cells of an organism are processed and turned into a file containing combinations of the four nucleotides—A T C G—that make up the DNA of all living things. Once we remove the human genetic information from the sequences we are ready to analyze the remaining data.
“Next generation sequencing metagenomics allows much deeper characterization of the microbiome complexity, allowing identification of a larger number of species for each sample, compared to 16s rDNA amplicon sequencing.”
Laudadio, et al., 2018
Not All NGS is Created Equal
Next-generation sequencing is the future, but the different types of NGS vary widely in what data they provide. Metagenomics is the future of pathogen detection in both research and medical diagnosis.
One very common form of NGS is called 16s.
This form of sequencing detects bacteria by their 16s ribosomal sections.
But this only accounts for ~0.001% of the total genome, leaving out a huge amount of information.
Metagenomic sequencing is able to look at everything 16s detects plus much more: all known viral, human, fungi, and parasite DNA.
For example, if you have high amounts of Zika virus, a brain-eating amoeba, or rare fungi in a given sample, 16s won’t find anything
Deep metagenomic sequencing allows Aperiomics to examine
~100% of the DNA in a sample, providing 100,000 times more information.
Don’t Sacrifice Data By Using Older Methods
|PCR and 16s
|Identiﬁes the Following:|
|Genome||Up to 100%||~0.001%|
|Microbes identiﬁed to species level||>37,000||-|
|Cost per microbe||$0.03-0.05||Up to $300|
The History of Diagnosis
Shotgun metagenomic sequencing paints a fuller, more vibrant picture of genetic information than older and far more expensive methods. Here’s a quick look at how we got here.
- 19th century
Culture-based diagnosis is developed. It is revolutionary: Finally, doctors could detect the microorganisms causing tuberculosis, pneumonia, and other deadly diseases.
- 20th century
More powerful methods such as antigen testing and PCR come into use. Excellent as they were initially, they had serious limitations in scope.
James Watson and Francis Crick determine the structure of DNA.
Carl Woese writes a paper shattering the known tree of life into three pieces, looking at the DNA sequences of Eukaryotes, Archaea, and Bacteria.
The first NGS-like technology is created by Lynx Therapeutics (later acquired by Solexa and eventually Illumina). This technology was not actually useful in research until the early 2000s and cost hundreds of millions of dollars.
Finally, the promise of NGS is at our disposal. At Aperiomics, we can search the totality of a sample for pennies per tested species.