Following a successful Stakeholder Program on Agent Detection Assays (SPADA) launch meeting at the 2021 AOAC Annual Meeting, SPADA Working Group 3, Reference Database and In Silico Processes Validation, met on October 4, and again on October 18. This working group, chaired by Dr. Michael Sussman, aims to create validation criteria and confidence parameters in reference genome databases. At the meeting, Dr. Sussman gave an overview of SPADA, working group goals, next generation sequencing (NGS), and challenges to the field. Working group members discussed the scope of work and next steps, highlighting that a Guidance Document may be a product of the group in addition to Standard Method Performance Requirements® (SMPR®).
Working Group 2, Standards for NGS Biothreat Agent Detectors, met on October 8, discussing the development of standards for the NGS biothreat agent detectors that encompass both PCR-based amplicon sequencing applications and metagenomic applications.
If you are interested in serving on a SPADA working group, becoming an advisory panel member, or participating as a general stakeholder, complete the SPADA participation form. You will be added to the AOAC SPADA roster and receive SPADA-related updates and news. For more information about SPADA, please contact Palmer Orlandi at [email protected].
AOAC SPADA is a funded integrated science program formed in 2007 to develop voluntary consensus standards for advancing detection capability of biothreat agents in support of the public health, public safety and security, and the safety of those serving in military service. SPADA has developed more than 20 voluntary consensus standards and consensus documents. In 2020, AOAC published SPADA developed consensus documents for soils testing, bacterial strain verification, and in silico analysis. Funding to initiate this program of work is made available by US DUSA TE, US JPEO, Abbott Nutrition, and Thermo Fisher Scientific.