Public Health: National Library of Medicine (NLM) Introduces New Tool in Support of Ongoing Pandemic Response
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.
About Gary Price
Gary Price (email@example.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. He earned his MLIS degree from Wayne State University in Detroit. Price has won several awards including the SLA Innovations in Technology Award and Alumnus of the Year from the Wayne St. University Library and Information Science Program. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com.