Diagnostic microbial isolates of bio-safety levels 3 and 4 are difficult to handle in medical field camps under military deployment settings. International transport of such isolates is challenging due to restrictions by the International Air Transport Association. An alternative option might be inactivation and sequencing of the pathogen at the deployment site with subsequent sequence-based revitalization in well-equipped laboratories in the home country for further scientific assessment. A literature review was written based on a PubMed search. First described for poliovirus in 2002, de novo synthesis of pathogens based on their sequence information has become a well-established procedure in science. Successful syntheses have been demonstrated for both viruses and prokaryotes. However, the technology is not yet available for routine diagnostic purposes. Due to the potential utility of diagnostic sequencing and sequence-based de novo synthesis of pathogens, it seems worthwhile to establish the technology for diagnostic purposes over the intermediate term. This is particularly true for resource-restricted deployment settings, where safe handling of harmful pathogens cannot always be guaranteed. peerReviewed
Document type: Article
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