Next-generation sequencing for Infections
: On my blog #Sciberomics
, I discuss how a recent study demonstrates the use of next-generation sequencing to identify the infectious organism in a case of encephalitis.
A 14-year old patient with severe and clinically worsening encephalitis (brain inflammation) had to be put into a medically-induced coma to control his epilepsy. Meantime, doctors rushed to find the exact cause of his condition. However, routine tests and even brain biopsy was unable to detect the cause. Finally, doctors analyzed his cerebrospinal fluid (the fluid that surrounds the brain) by next-generation sequencing, for evidence of DNA from different microorganisms.
They found DNA sequences of a bacterium – leptospira
. Based on this, they treated this teenager with high-dose penicillin (the treatment of choice for leptospirosis) and were able to save the life of this youngster.
Will this success help next-generation sequencing become a routine test for rare infections? Read more about this on my blog. #nextgenerationsequencing #encephalitis #genomics #leptospirosis #scicomm #outreach