In The Spotlights ASAB Scientists publish first whole genome sequence of SARS-CoV-2 from Pakistan

Dr Aneela Javed and Dr Ali Zohaib, leading scientists at Atta-ur-Rahman School of Applied Biosciences (ASAB), have successfully sequenced the complete genome of SARS-CoV2 – this will open up new avenues in tracing the evolutionary origin of SARS-CoV-2 that is currently infecting the Pakistani population, and will be useful in comparative genome analysis. This is indeed a much-needed breakthrough, as it will not only aid in understanding the origin of the virus but will also pave the way for development of accurate diagnostic assays and effective vaccines.

The project has been completed in collaboration with Armed Forces Institute of Pathology (AFIP) Rawalpindi, and Charite-Berlin Germany. The sequence was published through National Genome Data Centre, China on March 25, 2020, making it the first genome sequence of SARS-CoV-2 to be published from Pakistan, and is now available on NCBI​, GISAID and NEXTRAIN.