Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Next-Generation DNA Sequencing

There's a real revolution under way in terms of our ability to collect sequence information. The so-called Next-generation DNA sequencing technology relies on the ability to sequence billions of single DNA molecules simultaneously.

How does it work? I was planning on writing up a blog posting to explain the technology since so many experiments rely on it. I kept putting it off but that turns out to be a good thing 'cause others have explained it much better that I ever could have. Watch this video from Helicos.

[Hat Tip: ScienceRoll]


  1. Wow, sequencing technology has advanced since I was in grad school.

  2. Helicos's technology has a lot of problems though; and it came out a little too late

  3. Interestingly brute force.

    I am curious how you sort out all this data about short sequences that were cut from larger strands to get back the sequence of the larger strand?

  4. I'm waiting on the phi29 single molecule technologies (Pacific Biosciences).

    Anonymous - most applications align to a know reference sequence with some threshold of sequence identity. A closely related species, or a within-population study is most common. The various transcript-detection or ribosome protection studies rely on a known genome.

  5. TOJ,

    So, I put the jig saw back together using the picture. In a simple sense, that would mean I didn't need the sequence in the first place because I already had it.

    Although, I sense you mean that I can discover small differences against a mostly correct reference.

    So not so good for sequencing a new genome for $1000. But good for decerning differences in closely related genomes.

    So for a $1000 we could look at the difference between lots of individual people for example.

    BTW - my nameis Geore