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EU Commits €20M for Animal and Human Pathogens Genomic Data-Sharing Consortium

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – The European Union will provide more than €20 million ($23.2 million) for a five-year collaborative project to share genomic data related to pathogens posing a threat to human and animal health, according to the Technical University of Denmark, one of the partners in the effort.

The project, titled the Collaborative Management Platform for detection and Analyses of (Re-) emerging and food borne outbreaks in Europe (COMPARE), will create an information sharing system to help scientists respond to disease outbreaks. Its aim is to reduce the impact and cost of those outbreaks by speeding up detection and response efforts. The platform will be designed around whole-genome sequencing data of pathogens.

"The platform we are going to create in this project will make it possible in real time to exchange and interpret information about disease-causing microorganisms from around the world and to compare this with other relevant information such as clinical and epidemiological data," Frank Møller Aarestrup, a professor at the National Food Institute, Technical University of Denmark, said in a statement. "The aim is that the platform can be used to harmonize the way scientists, authorities, doctors, and organizations around the world collect samples, generate genome sequencing data, and carry out risk assessments."

In total, COMPARE has 28 European partners. Several members of the COMPARE consortium are also behind the Global Microbial Identifier project.