Events / News

23 Sep 2021

COG-UK’s third Science Showcase – SARS-CoV-2 genomics in action: Thursday 7 October

Join us on Thursday 7 October between 13:00 and 15:30 BST to learn about the role of SARS-CoV-2 genomics in COVID-19 national studies.

On the afternoon of 7 October 2021, the COVID-19 Genomics UK (COG-UK) consortium presents its third online ‘Science Showcase Event’ with speakers covering the contribution of COG-UK to national studies and research over the last 18 months.

With SARS-CoV-2 genomic sequencing now handed over to the public health agencies, we reflect on and celebrate the role sequencing has played in the pandemic since its start. We showcase how rapid and responsive sequencing, tightly integrated with public health policy and bound by a firm commitment to open-access data, methods, tools and publications, has demonstrated what pathogen genomics can achieve and opened up new possibilities for the future.

As a number of core studies are ongoing with findings to be finalised, much of the data to be presented will be “work in progress”. Likewise, the role of SARS-CoV-2 genomics in public health continues to evolve, and is reflected in the three post-sequencing priorities of the COG-UK consortium: research, global training and data linkage.

The Showcase will highlight how COG-UK data have played a vital part in key national studies, often behind the scenes. Did you know that SARS-CoV-2 genomics has been woven into the Oxford vaccine trial, and been crucial to the Office of National Statistics regular COVID-19 infection survey? COG-UK data have also provided input into national studies of care homes and prisons, and local investigations in universities and hospitals. Join us on the 7 October to hear about the challenges, opportunities and successes of collaborative SARS-CoV-2 genomics on the front line.

In preparation for this event, we have reflected on the very different backdrop to each of our previous two Showcases. The first event was held in December 2020, at the height of the Alpha variant wave and with COG-UK suddenly on everyone’s lips. The event was truly a four-nation affair with speakers from every corner of the UK and an introduction by Chief Scientific Adviser, Sir Patrick Vallance. The event recording has been watched over 60,000 times on YouTube.

The second event in March 2021 continued the science narrative and, in line with the COG-UK commitment to global training, was attended by an international audience representing nearly 50 different countries.

With the next event less than two weeks’ away, we warmly invite anyone with an interest in SARS-CoV-2 genomics to register and join us for all or part of the afternoon.

View the agenda and register for free now

We look forward to seeing you on the day. A recording of the event will be posted on YouTube for those unable to attend – please register for the event to receive notification of video availability.

COVID-19 Genomics UK (COG-UK)

The COVID-19 Genomics UK (COG-UK) consortium works in partnership to harness the power of SARS-CoV-2 genomics in the fight against COVID-19.

Led by Professor Sharon Peacock of the University of Cambridge, COG-UK is made up of an innovative collaboration of NHS organisations, the four public health agencies of the UK, the Wellcome Sanger Institute and sixteen academic partners. A full list of collaborators can be found here.

The COVID-19 pandemic, caused by SARS-CoV-2, represents a major threat to health. The COG-UK consortium was formed in March 2020 to deliver SARS-CoV-2 genome sequencing and analysis to inform public health policy and to support the establishment of a national pathogen sequencing service, with sequence data now predominantly generated by the Wellcome Sanger Institute and the Public Health Agencies.

SARS-CoV-2 genome sequencing and analysis plays a key role in the COVID-19 public health response by enabling the identification, tracking and analysis of variants of concern, and by informing the design of vaccines and therapeutics. COG-UK works collaboratively to deliver world-class research on pathogen sequencing and analysis, maximise the value of genomic data by ensuring fair access and data linkage, and provide a training programme to enable equity in global sequencing.