Hosting PacBio User Group Meeting June 27/28: Win Sequencing on our Sequel System

For the 5th year in a row, we’re proud to be hosting the annual PacBio East Coast User Group Meeting (UGM) & Workshops on June 27 & June 28 at the School of Pharmacy.  The UGM is a great opportunity to hear how scientists are using SMRT Sequencing to advance their research, a chance to learn best practices, and an opportunity to hear about application success stories. The agenda features speakers from Johns Hopkins University, The Jackson Laboratory, New England Biolabs, Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, University of Massachusetts Medical School, North Carolina State University, University of Florida & more. In addition, PacBio staff will be on-hand to answer questions, share insights, and talk about the technology road map.


Two SMRT Sequencing interactive workshops take place on campus on June 27th:

  • From 9am – 1pm, the Bioinformatics Workshop will highlight new tools available within SMRT Analysis 4.x. The PacBio Bioinformatics team will share analysis guidance for ensuring genomes are publication ready, as well as discuss various multiplexed analyses available through SMRT Link and enabled by the latest protocols for the Sequel System.
  • From 2pm – 6pm, the Sample Prep Workshop will cover product updates, application updates, and sample preparation recommendations to achieve the longest reads possible. Interactive group breakout sessions will facilitate discussions about specific applications of SMRT Sequencing.

Register online to attend these events.


New to PacBio sequencing?  We’re offering a chance to win sequencing and analysis on our new Sequel System.  The Microbial SMRT Grant program is open until June 30 and entering is simple: just submit a brief application describing how you’d use the long reads, high accuracy, single-molecule resolution, and uniform coverage of SMRT Sequencing to fully characterize viruses, microbes, and/or their communities.


One winner will be chosen by a panel of scientists. Submit your entry today!

Do you have this year’s SMRTest Microbe? Apply Now!

As announced at ASM Microbe last month, the GRC and PacBio are once again co-sponsoring the “SMRTest Microbe” Grant Program. We are accepting research proposals for one more week!

Submit a short application (<250 words) describing your microbe or microbial community and how it would benefit from the long reads, high accuracy and direct detection of epigenetic modifications generated by SMRT Sequencing. One winner will be selected by a panel of scientists and will receive up to four library preparations and a sequencing run using up to eight SMRT Cells. Sequencing and bioinformatics analysis will be performed by the GRC, a PacBio Certified Service Provider.

Are you interested in microbial genomes, complex populations, or methylomes? If so, submit your proposals by July 15, 2016.

Other restrictions apply. See official rules.

PacBio RSII producing encouraging early results

Our PacBio throughput and read lengths have been improving steadily over the past year and may have just taken yet another big step forward.  We upgraded our PacBio sequencer to RSII in mid-May and we are seeing significant increases in per-cell yield and improved read lengths with our longer libraries.  The most notable change in the upgrade from RSI to RSII is the doubling of the number of simultaneously observable sequencing reactions on the SMRTcell, allowing throughput to be effectively doubled as well.  Let’s take a look at some examples:

In this comparison of an 8kb Mycobacterium library that was run both before and after the upgrade, we see an almost 3x increase in total yield per-SMRTcell, while read lengths remain about the same.

Below is a comparison of per-SMRTcell stats from multiple libraries across multiple organisms, including both 8kb and 14kb libraries from Mycobacterium sp., Plasmodium falciparum, Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Candida albicans.  Driven by the longer libraries, we see both dramatically higher yield and longer read lengths. On one recent 8 SMRTcell run of a 14kb library, we saw an average per-SMRTcell yield of 417 Mbp!

Here is a read length plot comparing the runs from the table above:

 Although we are early in our use and optimization of the new PacBio RSII, we are encouraged by the increase in both yield and read length, and expect continued improvement in our PacBio data, subsequently improving data analysis and genome assembly.