The “MLL Academy - Workshop on Next-Generation Sequencing (NGS)” was held for the first time from November 7 - 8, 2019. The eighteen international participants were able to gain detailed insights into the theoretical and practical principals of all individual NGS steps – from generating a library to sequencing to interpreting the data. Due to the overwhelmingly positive feedback of the participants, a two-day “MLL Academy – Workshop on Next-Generation Sequencing” is already in the works for 2020.
Next-generation sequencing has rapidly developed into an essential method in molecular genetics. In the context of hematological neoplasia, NGS has made significant contributions towards the progress of leukemia and lymphoma research, diagnostics, and the development of targeted therapies. Back in 2010, MLL had already established NGS as a routine procedure in an accredited environment, the first laboratory in Europe to do so. Over the years, the NGS protocol has been continuously optimized, starting from the preparation of the samples for sequencing to the improvement in panel designs to the development of bioinformatic tools and data bases for the best possible interpretation of the data.
In addition to routine diagnostics, MLL 2017 has also started working on the “5,000 Genome Project.” In order to acquire as much knowledge as possible, various leukemia and lymphoma subgroups have been studied using high-throughput sequencing – both the genome (WGS, whole-genome sequencing) as well as the transcriptome (whole-transcriptome sequencing, RNA-seq) of the patient. During the two-day workshop, we shared with the participants our experience and knowledge in processing and interpreting NGS data, in diagnostics, and in experimental research.
The participants included doctors, (molecular) biologists, and bioinformaticians. The practice-oriented mix of theoretical introductory talks and overview lectures, practical exercises, group discussions, and satellite sessions spotlighting the topic at hand went over very well.
MLL would like to express its appreciation for the positive participant feedback, and it is looking forward to hosting a two-day MLL Academy workshop focusing on NGS in the coming year as well. As soon as we have confirmed the date, we will of course publish it on www.mll.com.