NYT’s “A DNA Sequencing Revolution Helped Us Fight COVID. What Else Can It Do?” Showcases Visit to NYGC, NYGC Scientist Interviews

NEW YORK, NY (March 25, 2021) — “One morning last August, after the pandemic’s first wave had ebbed on the East Coast, I visited the New York Genome Center in Lower Manhattan to observe the process of genomic sequencing.”

This first-person reporting is part of A DNA Sequencing Revolution Helped Us Fight COVID. What Else Can It Do? – Ultrafast and Ultracheap Sequencing Could Reshape the Future of Health Care, an in-depth feature posted online today in The New York Times Magazine in advance of its March 28 print issue. To conduct this investigation, reporter Jon Gertner “embedded” himself at the NYGC, shadowing on-site NYGC lab technicians and interviewing an array of NYGC scientists.

Article highlights include:

  • Tracking Dina Manaa, NYGC Sequencing Operations Lab Manager, and other lab technicians as they worked on SARS-CoV-2 samples taken from patients at New Jersey’s Hackensack University Medical Center, part of the NYGC’s work within the COVID-19 Genomics Research Network.
  • Discussing CRISPR with NYGC Core Faculty Member Neville Sanjana, PhD, with Dr. Sanjana describing this as a breakthrough “platform technology” to better understand the genetic basis of human disease.
  • Interviewing NYGC Evnin Family Scientific Director and CEO Tom Maniatis, PhD, on the rapid advances in whole-genome sequencing technologies, with collaborations such as the NYGC’s recently announced partnership with Weill Cornell Medicine and NewYork- Presbyterian Hospital to conduct whole-genome sequences on thousands of patients soon to produce, as Dr. Maniatis notes, “the most powerful and valuable clinical test you could have…a lifetime record.”

Read the complete article here.