Personalis Wins New Contract to Sequence >34,000 Whole Human Genomes for the VA’s Million Veteran Program
Personalis, Inc., a provider of advanced genomic sequencing and analytics for immuno-oncology, today announced a new contract with the US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to sequence over 34,000 whole human genomes for the VA’s Million Veteran Program (MVP).
Personalis was first commissioned by the VA MVP in 2012. Since then, Personalis has heavily invested in technology and infrastructure to expand its high-volume capabilities. In 2017, Personalis placed an order for ten Illumina NovaSeq 6000 instruments. The company has also developed sophisticated data systems for tracking such large numbers of human genetic samples, for efficiently processing and managing the flow of many petabytes of genetic data, and for maintaining auditable quality at large scale.
Personalis CEO, John West, said, “We are proud to continue our relationship with the VA MVP, a relationship we believe leverages great synergy between us. By pushing the forefront in immuno-oncology, we believe we have developed skills and technologies which help us to support the VA. By entrusting us with such volume, the VA has helped us drive up our scale. We see these projects as a true win-win.”
About the VA Million Veteran Program (MVP)
Launched in 2011, MVP is a landmark research effort aimed at better understanding how genetic variations affect health. Up to a million Veterans are expected to enroll in the VA study over the next 4-5 years. Data and genetic samples collected through the study are stored securely and made available for studies by authorized researchers, with stringent safeguards in place to protect Veterans’ private health information. MVP is now enrolling at over 52 VA medical centers nationwide. The VA’s central biorepository is equipped with a state-of-the-art robotic system for DNA extraction and storage and is currently being expanded to support up to 4 million samples. With more than 610,000 enrollees to date, MVP already far exceeds the enrollment numbers of any single VA study or research program in the past, and is in fact one of the largest research cohorts of its kind in the world.
MVP provides researchers with a rich resource of genetic, health, lifestyle, and military-exposure data collected from questionnaires, medical records, and genetic analyses. By combining this information into a single database, MVP promises to advance knowledge about the complex links between genes and health.
Veterans’ privacy and confidentiality are top priorities in MVP, as in all VA research. For more information about MVP, visit www.research.va.gov/MVP.
This press release does not imply a Department of Veterans Affairs endorsement, and is neither paid for nor sponsored, in whole or in part, by any element of the United States Government.