Posted on Mar 30, 2016

USF Nursing adds DNA analyzer technology to research laboratory [VIDEO]

USF College of Nursing recently added next-generation gene analyzer technology to its state-of-the-art bio-behavioral research laboratory.

The college is one of the first nursing institutions in the country to house an Illumina MiSeq desktop sequencer in the lab. This world-class technology analyzes small DNA sequencing and targeted gene expression – quickly and automatically.

“The Illumina MiSeq is an extraordinary instrument as it allows us to gather an incredible amount of data, we call this big data,” said Maureen Groer, PhD, Gordon Keller professor at USF College of Nursing. “This new system enables us to process samples overnight from all types of sources, and analyze the exact species of microbes living in the human gut. And this was something we couldn’t do in our lab before.”

Illumina MiSeq at USF Nursing_Dr. Groer

The system is equipped with optimized library preparation kits, push-button sequencing, and automated data analysis options. USF Nursing scientists, led by Dr. Groer, received extensive training to learn how to properly and effectively use the system.

“This machine gives USF Nursing an enormous potential in moving forward with its research mission,” Dr. Groer said. “We currently have several partners and colleagues in USF Health Morsani College of Medicine and other Health colleges who want to collaborate and analyze data on our Illumina MiSeq.”

Dr. Groer is currently using the system to analyze data from her research with preterm infants and their gut microbiome, a $2.7 million study funded by National Institutes of Health. Other USF Nursing faculty are utilizing the technology in their research areas as well.

Illumina MiSeq at USF Nursing

USF Nursing was recently ranked No. 1 in National Institutes of Health (NIH) funding among Florida state universities and No. 24 in the United States. This rank was a significant recognition of the college’s faculty and their research excellence.

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Story by Vjollca Hysenlika
Video by Vjollca Hysenlika & Ryan Noone