May 16, 2022

Public Health: National Library of Medicine (NLM) Introduces New Tool in Support of Ongoing Pandemic Response

From NLM:

The National Library of Medicine’s (NLM) National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) launched this week the SARS-CoV-2 Variants Overview interactive web resource to support the identification of emerging variants of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). This free, open access tool provides the public health community with valuable information needed to guide COVID-19 pandemic research and response efforts.

The SARS-CoV-2 Variants Overview aggregates SARS-CoV-2 sequence data from NLM’s GenBank and Sequence Read Archive (SRA) genetic databases to provide quick visualizations of the geographical prevalence of COVID-19 variants in the United States and around the world.

This resource provides data on SARS-CoV-2 variants and lineages classified as:

  • Variants Being Monitored (VBM)
  • Variants of Interest (VOI)
  • Variants of Concern (VOC)
  • Variants of High Consequence (VOHC)

“This portal provides access to variant calls made with a standardized approach from SARS-CoV-2 sequence data in SRA records,” said Stephen Sherry, PhD, Acting Director of NCBI.  “It provides the high-quality data needed to make reliable predictions about the spread of COVID-19 to support the ongoing pandemic response.”

The SARS-CoV-2 Variants Overview is the result of NLM’s ongoing collaboration with the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Accelerating COVID-19 Therapeutic Interventions and Vaccines (ACTIV) initiative, a public-private partnership for a coordinated research strategy to support and accelerate the development of COVID-19 treatments and vaccines.

Learn More, User Guide (via NCBI)

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.