A framework for real-time monitoring, analysis and adaptive sampling of viral amplicon nanopore sequencing

Rory Munro, Nadine Holmes, Christopher Moore, Matthew Carlile, Alexander Payne, John Tyson, Tom G.S. Williams, Christopher Alder, Luke Blagdon Snell, Gaia Nebbia, Roberto Santon, Matthew Loose

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


The ongoing SARS-CoV-2 pandemic demonstrates the utility of real-time sequence analysis in monitoring and surveillance of pathogens. However, cost-effective sequencing requires that samples be PCR amplified and multiplexed via barcoding onto a single flow cell, resulting in challenges with maximising and balancing coverage for each sample. To address this, we developed a real-time analysis pipeline to maximise flow cell performance and optimise sequencing time and costs for any amplicon based sequencing. We extended our nanopore analysis platform MinoTour to incorporate ARTIC network bioinformatics analysis pipelines. MinoTour predicts which samples will reach sufficient coverage for downstream analysis and runs the ARTIC networks Medaka pipeline once sufficient coverage has been reached. We show that stopping a viral sequencing run earlier, at the point that sufficient data has become available, has no negative effect on subsequent down-stream analysis. A separate tool, SwordFish, is used to automate adaptive sampling on Nanopore sequencers during the sequencing run. This enables normalisation of coverage both within (amplicons) and between samples (barcodes) on barcoded sequencing runs. We show that this process enriches under-represented samples and amplicons in a library as well as reducing the time taken to obtain complete genomes without affecting the consensus sequence.
Original languageEnglish
Article number1138582
JournalFrontiers in Genetics
Early online date27 Mar 2023
Publication statusPublished - 2023


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