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Q: SARS virus genome ( Answered,   1 Comment )
Subject: SARS virus genome
Category: Miscellaneous
Asked by: lkyc-ga
List Price: $10.00
Posted: 25 Jun 2006 03:49 PDT
Expires: 25 Jul 2006 03:49 PDT
Question ID: 740901
Who broke the SARS virus genome?
Subject: Re: SARS virus genome
Answered By: palitoy-ga on 25 Jun 2006 04:50 PDT
Hello lkyc-ga,

Thank-you for your question.

The British Columbia Cancer Agency and the US Center for Disease
Control and Prevention were the first two laboratories to report the
sequencing of the two major strains of the SARS virus.  In reality, no
one company, laboratory or individual can really be said to have
broken the SARS genome, it was a collaborative effort coordinated by
the World Health Organization.  Without the help from laboratories and
scientists from around the world breaking the code would have taken
longer.  The laboratories involved in this work are cited in the
references below and in Science Magazine.

"On 17 March 2003, WHO called upon 11 laboratories in 9 countries to
join a collaborative multi-center research project on SARS diagnosis.
This network takes advantage of modern communication technologies
(e-mail; secure web site) to share outcomes of investigation of
clinical samples from SARS cases in real time. Daily assessment of
research results supports immediate refinement of investigative
strategies and permits instant validation of laboratory findings.
Network members share on the secure WHO web site electron microscopic
pictures of viruses, sequences of genetic material for virus
identification and characterization, virus isolates, various samples
from patients and post-mortem tissues. Samples from one and the same
patient can be analysed in parallel in several laboratories and
results shared in real time. This network joins the intellectual
resources of leading laboratories worldwide for a common goal: the
detection of the SARS agent and the development of a diagnostic test."

"The rapid sequencing of the SARS virus genome was facilitated by
collaboration with numerous other scientists, also working non-stop,
at laboratories in a WHO network set up in mid-March (2003)."

"In a tour de force of genomics, government research centers in Canada
and the US decoded the genome of the coronavirus - which was proven to
be the cause of SARS. The British Columbia Cancer Agency (BCCA) in
Vancouver was the first to sequence the SARS genome in the early hours
of Sunday, April 13, 2003,3 followed closely by the Center for Disease
Control and Prevention (CDC) of the US on April 14, 2003."

"Canadian scientists working around the clock have fully sequenced of
the genome of the SARS virus. This major step forward will expedite
development of improved diagnostic tests and underpin work on a
vaccine. The rapid sequencing of the SARS virus genome is the result
of scientific collaboration between numerous laboratories in a WHO
network set up in mid-March 2003."

"British Columbia Cancer Agency and CDC researchers were among many at
11 laboratories worldwide who have been collaborating in the effort to
identify the cause of SARS and devise a vaccine or a treatment."

"On April 14, 2003, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
(CDC) announced the completion of the full-length genetic sequencing
of the genome of the SARS-associated coronavirus (SARS-CoV). The
sequence data confirmed that SARS-CoV is a previously unrecognized
coronavirus. Information provided by collaborators at the National
Microbiology Laboratory, Canada; University of California at San
Francisco; Erasmus University, Rotterdam; and Bernhard-Nocht
Institute, Hamburg, facilitated the sequencing effort."

Papers were published in Science Magazine detailing the breaking of the genome:

"Characterization of a Novel Coronavirus Associated with Severe Acute
Respiratory Syndrome
Paul A. Rota, M. Steven Oberste, Stephan S. Monroe, W. Allan Nix, Ray
Campagnoli, Joseph P. Icenogle, Silvia Peñaranda, Bettina Bankamp,
Kaija Maher, Min-hsin Chen, Suxiong Tong, Azaibi Tamin, Luis Lowe,
Michael Frace, Joseph L. DeRisi, Qi Chen, David Wang, Dean D. Erdman,
Teresa C. T. Peret, Cara Burns, Thomas G. Ksiazek, Pierre E. Rollin,
Anthony Sanchez, Stephanie Liffick, Brian Holloway, Josef Limor, Karen
McCaustland, Melissa Olsen-Rasmussen, Ron Fouchier, Stephan Günther,
Albert D. M. E. Osterhaus, Christian Drosten, Mark A. Pallansch, Larry
J. Anderson, William J. Bellini1"

The scientists cited on this paper came from:
* National Center for Infectious Diseases, Centers for Disease Control
and Prevention, Atlanta, USA.
* Departments of Biochemistry and Biophysics, University of
California?San Francisco, USA.
* Department of Virology, Erasmus University, Netherlands.
* Department of Virology, Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical
Medicine, Hamburg, Germany.

"The Genome Sequence of the SARS-Associated Coronavirus
Marco A. Marra, Steven J. M. Jones, Caroline R. Astell, Robert A.
Holt, Angela Brooks-Wilson, Yaron S. N. Butterfield, Jaswinder
Khattra, Jennifer K. Asano, Sarah A. Barber, Susanna Y. Chan, Alison
Cloutier, Shaun M. Coughlin, Doug Freeman, Noreen Girn, Obi L.
Griffith, Stephen R. Leach, Michael Mayo, Helen McDonald, Stephen B.
Montgomery, Pawan K. Pandoh, Anca S. Petrescu, A. Gordon Robertson,
Jacqueline E. Schein, Asim Siddiqui, Duane E. Smailus, Jeff M. Stott,
George S. Yang, Francis Plummer, Anton Andonov, Harvey Artsob,
Nathalie Bastien, Kathy Bernard, Timothy F. Booth, Donnie Bowness,
Martin Czub, Michael Drebot, Lisa Fernando, Ramon Flick, Michael
Garbutt, Michael Gray, Allen Grolla, Steven Jones, Heinz Feldmann,
Adrienne Meyers, Amin Kabani, Yan Li, Susan Normand, Ute Stroher,
Graham A. Tipples, Shaun Tyler, Robert Vogrig, Diane Ward, Brynn
Watson, Robert C. Brunham, Mel Krajden, Martin Petric, Danuta M.
Skowronski, Chris Upton, Rachel L. Roper"

The scientists cited on this paper came from:
* British Columbia Cancer Agency (BCCA) Genome Sciences Centre
* National Microbiology Laboratory, Manitoba, Canada.
* British Columbia Centre for Disease Control and University of
British Columbia Centre for Disease Control
* Department of Biochemistry and Microbiology, University of Victoria, Canada.

If you require any further information on this subject please ask for
clarification and I will do my best to respond swiftly.

Further reading:
Subject: Re: SARS virus genome
From: kottekoe-ga on 25 Jun 2006 11:35 PDT
It depends on what you mean by "broke the genome". Joe DeRisi at UCSF
was the first to "break" the basic outline of the genome by
determining that SARS was a coronavirus different from any other known
example. He did this within a couple of days of getting a sample from
the Center for Disease Control using DNA microarray technology. He was
later recognized with a the highly prestigious MacArthur Fellowship.

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