Defeating the coronavirus pandemic will require unprecedented cooperation from the research community. This is especially true for the Adaptive Immune Receptor Repertoire Community (AIRR-C), given the paramount importance of antibodies and T cells for vaccines, diagnostics, and therapeutics in viral infection. Therefore, the AIRR-C hereby calls upon its members, and the wider research community, to share experiences, resources, samples, and data as openly and freely as possible, and to work within their respective systems to break down barriers to achieve this goal, subject to the overarching directives of respect, privacy, and protection for patients and all people. We are in this together.
The idea of a Diagnostics WG originated in May at the AIRR-C IV meeting in Genoa, Italy. The three initiators, Florian Rubelt (Roche Sequencing Solutions), Nicolas Schwab (UK Münster) and Christopher Gooley (Microsoft Research), felt that it was time for AIRR-based diagnostics to make their way into the clinic. The transition from an academic environment to a clinical setting creates new challenges, which will be of high interest within the AIRR Community and beyond. The AIRR-Community has a unique advantage to connect people from academia and industry from around the world and provides a great basis to identify and address these new challenges in the AIRR field.
A group of interested participants held an ad hoc session at the Genoa meeting and at this point the AIRR-C Diagnostics Interim Working Group has held 9 calls with over 30 participants. Early discussions have revolved around identifying the set of tasks and the format of the group.
A first agreed-upon product is a commentary about AIRR-based diagnostics. This initial commentary manuscript is meant to introduce AIRR-based diagnostics and the potential future opportunities to a clinical audience. The group has also ran a survey to identify the background and interests of the group. One outcome of the survey was to identify bottlenecks and challenges bringing AIRR based diagnostics to the clinic.
Currently, the AIRR-C Diagnostics interim working group is led by Florian Rubelt, Nicholas Schwab and Christopher Gooley and has more than 60 members.
For more information and updates please refer to the AIRR-C Diagnostics Interim Working Group website.
If you are interested in joining, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
AIRR-C Executive Sub-committee member Christian Busse gave a talk at the deRSE2019 (Konferenz für ForschungssoftwareentwicklerInnen in Deutschland – Conference for software engineers in Germany) on building scientific communities using the AIRR-C as an example.
Check out his talk here: https://doi.org/10.5446/42486.
The fourth AIRR Community meeting (#AIRRC4) took place at the University of Genoa, May 11–15, 2019, in an unusual and gorgeous location. All talks were held in a 17th century church that has been repurposed for conference settings. The overarching theme of this meeting was “Bridging the Gaps” which aimed to address technological gaps between the amounts of accumulated data and our ability to process them, and the need for more involvement of stakeholder communities (industry, clinicians, patient communities) for the dissemination and implementation of the standards developed by the AIRR Community.
AIRR Community meetings are the premier event for research on adaptive immune-receptor repertoires. They are also the primary location where the AIRR-Community’s Working Groups and Sub-committees come together in one location to discuss how to push standardization in AIRR-sequencing (AIRR-seq) data and analysis forward. All meeting documents, slides, and video recordings can be found here:
Just like the biology of immune repertoires is high-dimensional, this meeting’s success was as well! We gathered some of the numbers that best describe the success of the AIRR C IV meeting.
- 2 Keynote speakers: Sai T. Reddy (ETH, Zürich, CH), Antonio Lanzavecchia (Instituto di Ricerca in Biomedicina, Bellinzona, CH)
- 154 attendees from 5 continents and 22 countries
- 18 invited speakers
- 15 sponsors
- This was the first time a twitter hashtag was used for an AIRR Community Meeting
- Two pre-meeting workshops were held, teaching the basics of immunology, and of AIRR-seq data analysis
- AIRR-seq Tool demonstrations and Pipeline and Data Repository tutorial sessions were held