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Critical Path Institute, TGen Partner on Tuberculosis Sequencing Project

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) — The Critical Path Institute (C-Path) announced yesterday that it has partnered with the Translational Genomics Research Institute to sequence thousands of tuberculosis bacteria isolates as part of a broader effort to develop personalized treatments for the disease.

C-Path said it has received a $1.1 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to enhance its Relational Sequencing TB Data Platform (ReSeqTB), which standardizes, curates, and aggregates genomic, phenotypic, and clinical outcome data to better understand the genetic basis of drug resistance in Mycobacterium tuberculosis.

The institute plans to work with TGen's Pathogen Genomics Division and other collaborators over the next three years to sequence the DNA of at least 12,000 M. tuberculosis isolates from samples derived from public health laboratories, clinical drug trials, and biobanks in up to 35 countries around the world, with the goal of building a database of genetic markers that can help better diagnose TB patients and design precision treatment regimens.

"This critical partnership will allow us to bridge knowledge gaps essential for identifying TB drug-resistance patterns, and ultimately help us to better treat patients," Debra Hanna, executive director of C-Path's Critical Path to TB Drug Regimens initiative, said in a statement. "With TGen's expertise in DNA sequencing, we at C-Path are able to extract valuable data from existing clinical samples and make them available globally via the ReSeqTB data-sharing platform."