News

MAQC Society 3Q2021 Newsletter

Greetings from the MAQC Society,

This past quarter has been a prominent time for the MAQC Society.  Nature Biotechnology released their September 2021 issue highlighting and acknowledging the research of the Sequencing and Quality Control Phase 2 project by publishing four SEQC2-related papers as well as providing editorials about the history of the MAQC-related consortiums and the importance and impact of the MAQC Society’s work.  One of the editorials was provided by Marc Salit (Director of Joint Initiative for Metrology in Biology at Stanford Univ.) and Janet Woodcock (Acting Commissioner of the US Food and Drug Administration).  The MAQC Society is honored to have such prominent persons in science and health provide a perspective on the public-private partnership that the members of the MAQC Society have fostered.  To quote the editorial “…genomic data, with the confidence lent by the MAQC efforts, underpins many drug and device applications in the precision medicine arena.”  This event follows the successful publication of four other SEQC2 papers in NBT, Genome Biology and Genome Medicine that have appeared over the last five months.   Check out the complete collection athttps://themaqcorg/papers.  Also, many of these papers have video presentations available by the primary investigators available at https://themaqcorg/webinar, which were part of our earlier SEQC2 Webinar series.

 

Wendell Jones, PhD

Wendell Jones, PhD

Chairperson of MAQC Society

However, this is not the totality of the SEQC2-related publications.  More SEQC2 papers will appear in a variety of journals in the coming months, highlighting efforts in epigenetics, structural variant detection, applications of AI/ML in detecting somatic SNVs, quality control materials, and other areas.  Look for a new series of Webinars related to these SEQC2 research efforts this coming November (2021). 

 

Finally, I want to pre-announce that we will be inviting you to submit abstracts for MAQC 2022 very soon, most likely in the middle of October.  MAQC 2022 is scheduled to take place April 27-29, 2022 in Cary, NC USA (and via Whova/Zoom) at the SAS Institute Campus if we are successful in reducing COVID-19 infection rates.  We will provide additional information in the early January 2022 time frame as to whether the meeting will be a hybrid virtual/in-person meeting or 100% virtual.  The tentative theme for MAQC 2022 is Reproducibility and Explainable AI in Health.  In addition to papers related to reproducible and explainable AI, we will solicit papers examining massive data efforts related to COVID-19 evolution, tracking, and sequencing as well as traditional MAQC reproducibility-related topics in NGS, medical imaging, single-cell methods, and emerging molecular methods.   Feel free to contact me (wendell.jones  AT  q2labsolutions.com ) with questions. 

Regards,

Wendell Jones, PhD

Executive Chair of the MAQC Society

Press Release Announcing Nature Biotechnology SEQC2 Collection

MAQC Society 2Q2021 Newsletter

 

Greetings from the MAQC Society,

I am glad to report that we had a very successful virtual MAQC Society meeting at the end of April.  This joint meeting together with MCBIOS included over 40 presentations in the MAQC program and enabled the society to have a dual track for the first time.  These presentations highlighted long-term efforts by the SEQC2 consortium and additional interesting research related to imaging, ML, synthetic genomes, RNA and DNA-based biomarkers, multi-omics methods, general methods, single-cell methods, and standards.  We presented awards for best presentations (winners can be found on our home page – https://maqcsociety.org).  We also presented awards for members and non-members publishing scientific papers in 2020 that promoted the mission and objectives of the society.  Finally, we had the opportunity to honor Dr. Weida Tong by naming him Chair Emeritus of the MAQC Society. 

 

Wendell Jones, PhD

Wendell Jones, PhD

Chairperson of MAQC Society

This was our first attempt in conducting a virtual meeting.  I want to especially thank Dr. Steven Foley, Dr. Shraddha Thakkar, Dr. Binsheng Gong, and the rest of the support staff at FDA-NCTR for evaluating conference software, configuring the meeting setup, and for administering and managing the joint conference itself.  This was a large effort on their part and we were able to make every speaker’s presentation available and accessible to the community at the designated time (no technical glitches!).   I also want to thank all the speakers for their contributed work, for the recordings of their presentations, and for being available virtually for Q&A, which helped make the conference run smoothly.  From the meeting and the promotion efforts leading up to it, we now have a society membership of roughly 200 persons.  This is a significant milestone as, up to this point, the society had not kept formal membership rolls.   As much as we enjoyed interacting at the virtual MAQC Society meeting, please make plans now to come in-person to the 5th annual MAQC Society meeting on SAS Campus in Cary, NC USA April 27-29, 2022.  I look forward to the time when I can greet you face-to-face. 

Another first for the society was conducting a webinar series on SEQC2 efforts and research.  This 12-part Webinar series was well-attended and served as a means for not only educating the community on important research being conducted by the SEQC2 consortium but also provided a mechanism to promote society membership and advertise the 2021 annual meeting.  I want to thank our speakers:  Dr. Weida Tong, Dr. Wenming Xiao, Dr. Li Tai Fang, Dr. Charles Wang, Dr. Mohammad Sahraeian, Dr. Mehdi Pirooznia, Dr. Joshua Xu, Dr. Binsheng Gong, Dr. Christopher Mason, Dr. Jonathan Foox, and Dr. Huixiao Hong for highlighting their (and the consortium’s) research during the webinar series.  We hope to make the webinar presentations available to MAQC Society members and otherssoon.

In addition to the presentations, publications by members of the society and the SEQC2 consortium are starting to appear on-line or in print.  Check out our Papers page Papers | MAQC society (themaqc.org) for the latest.  The SEQC2 has two papers already appearing in Nature Biotechnology, two papers appearing in Genome Biology, and one paper describing the scRNA-seq dataset in Scientific Data.  In addition, other papers from the Somatic Sequencing working group have been accepted by Nature Biotechnology and still others from SEQC2 will appear in Cell Genomics and other journals over the next few months.  Keep checking the society web pages for updates.

Finally, I wanted to make you aware of a new MAQC Society project.  The area is inflammatory biomarkers and the immune system. The study is attempting to examine optimal methods for cell identification by comparing single-cell technologies such as the different methods of cell cytometry including standard flow, mass cytometry, and spectral flow cytometry as well as different methods of single cell RNA sequencing.  The sample requirements to perform a multi-lab, multi-platform study of single cells are challenging in that these methods typically need a large number of viable cells to perform optimally.  We are in the middle of identifying and acquiring the necessary number of patients/cells suitably preserved for this study, which is a nontrivial task.  We will provide an update next quarter as to our success and needs.  If you have an interest in participating in this study or have an idea for a suitable new study that can leverage the knowledge and insight of the MAQC Society, please contact me (wendell.jones  AT  q2labsolutions.com ). 

 

Regards,

Wendell Jones, PhD

Executive Chair of the MAQC Society