At the completion of the 100,000 Genomes Project in 2018, Matt Hancock, UK Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, announced the ambition of sequencing five million genomes in the next five years. To this end, Genomics England has selected QIAGEN to provide bioinformatic support to the NHS Genomic Medicine Service and the national network of Genomic Laboratory Hubs.
Genomics England worked with QIAGEN for the 100,000 Genomes project, which informed the decision to use its resources for the ongoing genome sequencing work. Augusto Rendon, Director of Bioinformatics and Genomics England, said: "Next-generation sequencing is a valuable tool for diagnosing and suggesting potential treatment approaches, but it is critical for healthcare providers to be able to interpret NGS data in the context of the vast body of knowledge from research and clinical experience. The exhaustive knowledge in QIAGEN’s bioinformatics tools enables us to do this".
The NHS Long Term Plan launched in January, reaffirmed the commitment made last year that from 2019, all children with cancer will be offered whole genome sequencing to enable more comprehensive and precise diagnosis, and access to more personalised treatments. The systematic application of genomic technologies can enable quicker diagnoses for patients with a rare disease; match people to the most effective treatments, reducing the likelihood of an adverse drug reaction; and increase survival rates.
Founded in Düsseldorf, Germany in 1984, QIAGEN was a university spin-off. The company created a simpler, safer way for laboratories to handle the painstaking tasks of preparing samples to explore DNA. With revenues of nearly $1.5 billion, it is listed on the New York and Frankfurt stock exchanges.