News posted 3 December, 2020

Agilent Announces Alissa Interpret Selected by North West Genomic Laboratory Hub for Clinical Genomic Analysis

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Agilent Technologies Inc. (NYSE: A) today announced its clinical informatics platform Alissa Interpret has been adopted by the North West Genomic Laboratory Hub (NW GLH) based in Manchester and Liverpool, part of Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust, England. The NW GLH and its partners are responsible for delivering genomic testing across the whole of the North West. Alissa Interpret, which enables clinical genetics labs to standardize and automate variant triage, review, classification, and reports on NGS data, becomes one of two platforms the NW GLH will use to analyze genomics data.

With sequencing data becoming increasingly important in the clinical environment, there is a growing need for analysis solutions that provide results quickly and accurately. Confidence in results is key in a clinical setting, along with the ability to analyze large numbers of samples, as many labs are scaling NGS tests into routine practice and thus need a solution to scale with them. Alissa Interpret is designed to increase certainty, minimize error, reduce the time-to-answer, and improve consistency of results and accuracy, no matter the throughput.

“Next-generation sequencing produces huge amounts of data in applications across cancer and human genetics, yet the complexity related to interpreting genomic variants continues to be a challenge,” said Kevin Meldrum, vice president and general manager of genomics at Agilent. “We developed Alissa Interpret to increase efficiency through standardization and enable informed decisions with a single-workflow variant assessment for both inherited disease and somatic assays, including SNPs, indels, CNVs, LOH, and translocations/fusion genes.”

Interpretation and actionability of NGS data are key factors in the adoption and success of NGS testing within the clinical market. Agilent SureSelect custom NGS panels allow customers like the NW GLH to precisely define target regions that are clinically relevant. Alissa Interpret increases efficiency and diagnostic yield by combining SNV, CNV, and fusion gene data on a single platform and seamless integration with LIMS and BioIT pipelines.

“It is important for us to implement a variant interpretation software system that is both compatible with the latest ACMG classification guidelines and supports the interpretation of rare genomic variants in the context of the patient’s clinical symptoms. The ability to use a single system to analyze both constitutional variations in the context of rare diseases and somatic variants detected in our cancer genomics services is highly desirable,” said Ronnie Wright, Clinical Scientist at the NW GLH, Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust.

“Moreover, given that each new observation of a genomic variant adds to the knowledge of its association with disease, it is essential that the system allows us to see the latest cumulative assessment of a variant and the relevant information associated with its interpretation to help us deliver the most accurate results,” Wright added.

Alissa Interpret is the product of choice for interpreting and validating NGS-based tests for rare diseases, as well as somatic and hematologic oncology. It incorporates a number of enabling features, such as clinical database integration, including phenotypic information and the latest ACMG classification guidelines, internal cohort analysis, lab-specific private database, and version control.