Microbial Genomics and Metagenomics Laboratory (MGML)
The Microbial Genomics and Metagenomics Laboratory (MGML) provides metagenomic sequencing and analysis support to the Cincinnati Children’s, University of Cincinnati and surrounding communities. The laboratory has assisted laboratories throughout the region with metagenomic studies since 2014 and was formally established as a shared facility in July 2019.
Metagenomics is a rapidly expanding field and has been a useful tool in examining alternative causes and treatments for diseases. Recent studies have shown that the various microbiota in the body contribute significantly to immune response, metabolism and other important bodily functions. Studying how various treatments and diseases respond to microbiome composition changes may provide insightful ways to improve treatment and disease prevention.
The MGML is staffed and equipped to provide services ranging from 16S ribosomal RNA sequencing (16S rRNA), shotgun metagenomics and RNA sequencing. Equipment within the laboratory includes; Bead Ruptor Elite (Omni International) Qiacube automated DNA extraction devices (Qiagen), Tapestation 2200 fragment analyzer (Agilent), Blue Pippen size selector (Sage Science), a Biomek i5 Span 8 to automate library preparation and a shared NovaSeq 6000 sequencing machine (Illumina).
In addition to DNA and RNA sequencing, the MGML provides bioinformatics support. The laboratory developed a bioinformatics pipeline to that takes raw DNA sequencing read data all the way through taxonomic assignment, functional metabolic gene abundance, and antibiotic gene detection. Advanced statistical analysis and graphing software is available through the MGML Core. The laboratory has also performed sequencing of individual bacterial isolates followed by downstream analysis of organism similarity (molecular epidemiology), presence of virulence genes and antibiotic resistance genes.
Work from the laboratory has been included in more than 15 publications, including publications in Nature, Nature Medicine, Cell Host and Microbe and Journal of Clinical Investigation.