Next generation training

Participants at an EMBL-Illumina training course. PHOTO: EMBL/M. SCHUPP
Participants at an EMBL-Illumina training course. PHOTO: EMBL/M. SCHUPP

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The first series of training courses jointly organised by the EMBL International Centre for Advanced Training and Illumina, a member of EMBL’s Corporate Partnership Programme, was a resounding success.

“This course has been very interesting. Now I feel like I have the confidence to go ahead without being anxious that I will mess it up!” explains Sofia Salö, from Roskilde University, Denmark, an enthusiastic participant of a new EMBL Practical Course on Next Generation Sequencing (NGS), held in partnership with Illumina.

This first training course organised by the EMBL International Centre for Advanced Training (EICAT) with Illumina, a member of EMBL’s Corporate Partnership Programme, was a success on many levels. Most importantly, it met the participants’ scientific expectations. Illumina is currently the most advanced provider of NGS technology: its high precision, reproducibility, and wide range of application makes it an indispensable tool for many researchers who then need efficient, hands-on, training.

The series of four courses took place between 6 October and 7 November 2014, and focused on four topics: whole genome sequencing/library preparation and validationtotal RNA sequencing/library preparation and validation, and amplicon-based and enrichment-based translational and clinical targeted resequencing.

Participants in an EMBL-Illumina training course. IMAGE: EMBL/M. SCHUPP

Participants in an EMBL-Illumina training course. IMAGE: EMBL/M. SCHUPP

The courses were fully booked, overflowing into a waiting list. Such high attendance for a first session is a good indicator that the upcoming courses – 12 dates are already booked in 2015 – will attract even more participants to EMBL.

“This kind of collaboration is extremely positive for both parties: EMBL is proud to offer training in the most advanced technology with the expert provider. At the same time, Illumina benefits from EMBL’s reputation of excellence in defining and developing the forefront of molecular biology,” explains Jürgen Deka, Scientific Coordinator of EICAT.

We really worked together to determine the best workflow

The scientific content of the courses was developed by Illumina, in partnership with Vladimir Benes and his team at the Genomics Core Facility. “We really worked together to determine the best workflow for the part of the course that is more focused on basic research; but the more clinically-oriented part was managed by Illumina,” explains Vladimir Benes, from EMBL. “We have a lot of theoretical and basic knowledge of how the product works, but it is very valuable to add the experience and best-practices from the Genomics Core Facility” adds Daniel Heisswolf, Marketing Clinical Specialist Central Europe, from Illumina.

Group photo of the first EMBL-Illumina training course. PHOTO: EMBL/M. SCHUPP

Group photo of the first EMBL-Illumina training course. PHOTO: EMBL/M. SCHUPP

This series of trainings was set-up following the training roundtable that took place in April 2014 between EMBL training experts and representatives of Founder and Corporate Partners. Co-organised by colleagues from EMBL’s Corporate Partnership Programme, and EICAT’s External Scientific Training, this annual meeting focuses on nurturing training synergies and strategies between EMBL and its Corporate Partners.

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