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MinION in the Clinic

Clinicians in the UK will be trying out Oxford Nanopore's MinION to see whether it can help them diagnose pneumonia more quickly, the Telegraph reports.

In a trial that's to begin next week, University of East Anglia researchers and their colleagues will be comparing the MinION to two non-sequencing-based genetic tests and conventional NHS treatments, the Telegraph says. The 18-moth trial is to evaluate whether the MinION can give doctors a genetic breakdown of the cause of patients' pneumonia to more quickly determine treatment.

"At the moment doctors in ICU do not have the tools to rapidly and accurately identify bacteria causing pneumonia and so typically prescribe a broad spectrum of antibiotics through guesswork," East Anglia's Justin O'Grady tells the Telegraph. "We want to take the guesswork out of this."

The Telegraph notes that the trial comes shortly after Sally Davies, the chief medical officer of England, called for genomic testing to become a routine part of clinical care.