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CCQM Workshop: A roadmap for metrology of infectious disease and future pandemic readiness

5 to 7 October 2021

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CCQM-WS/2021-01

A roadmap to metrology readiness for infectious disease pandemic response

J. Braybrook

16/06/2022

CCQM-Workshop-October-2021

Time

13.00-15.30 (UTC+2, CEST)

Introduction

Rapid and accurate diagnostic tests for SARS-CoV-2 have been imperative for identifying and managing infected individuals, contact tracing, epidemiologic characterisation and public health decision making at the national level.

Laboratory confirmation testing has typically been by ‘tried and tested’ nucleic acid amplification tests (NAAT), more specifically real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) assays, with some sample-to-answer platforms (including high-throughput systems and rapid point of care (PoC) assays) having been developed to increase testing capacity. Alternative strategies, such as other RNA detection methods and antigen tests have been proposed to complement RT-PCR for certain situations, such as resource-limited settings. Antibody assays have supported epidemiologic approaches. Sequencing techniques remain important for the identification and monitoring of SARS-CoV-2 variants of issue and concern.

The race to provide solutions saw a diverse assortment of technological diagnostic solutions, however this resulted in many tests with varying clinical utility, performance requirements and limitations. This was exacerbated by the complete absence of any reference measurement system for molecular and serological testing that could respond at pace to a rapidly moving pandemic. Drawing on the lessons learned from the COVID-19 pandemic, early intervention from a strong and organised international metrology framework could have been beneficial in supporting national readiness for such a health crisis. Measurement strategies to optimise safety, speed and ease of infectious disease testing, without compromising accuracy, are required to provide front-line tests that are robust and able to deliver results with the right clinical utility at the right time.

Objective

To develop a roadmap for metrology to support measurements associated with infectious disease and future pandemic readiness, based on identifying and characterising appropriate prognostic and diagnostic technologies, platforms and data management/integration, and recommending specific metrology interventions that could enable a more rapid response and enhance clinical outcome for a future pandemic.

Outline Agenda

Day 1: Lessons learned from COVID-19 pandemic: the measurement technology and data challenges

Output: Agreed challenge areas essential to address a future infectious disease pandemic

  • Chair:
    • Dr Julian Braybrook, National Measurement Laboratory at LGC, UK
  • Confirmed Speakers:
    • Angela Douglas MBE, Deputy Chief Scientific Officer, Office of the Chief Scientific Officer, NHS England and NHS Improvement, UK
    • Dr Julian Druce, Head of Virus Identification Laboratory, Victorian Infectious Diseases Reference Laboratory, Australia
    • Dr Duncan MacCannell, Office of Advanced Molecular Detection, National Centre for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases, Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), USA
    • Prof Jacob Moran-Gilad, School of Public Health, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Israel; Chief Microbiology Consultant, Soroka University Medical Centre; & ECCMID Programme Director, Israel
    • Dr Ji Wang, National Institute for Viral Disease Control and Prevention, Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), China

Panel Q&A / Delegate discussion

Day 2: Characterising the challenge areas

Output: Recommendations for what detection technologies and materials – metrology solutions required - within what networks - in support of what processes (for which the NMIs would have greatest added value).

  • Chair:
    • Dr Daniel Burke, NMI Australia
 

Parallel Session Workstreams

Workstream 1

Molecular and Antigen detection technologies
Sequencing technologies
Viral culture
for surveillance (detection of acute or past exposure/infection) and monitoring response/recovery, management of suspected individuals (detection of active infection), contact tracing (asymptomatic or symptomatic acute infection) and environmental monitoring

  • Panel Lead:
    • Dr Jim Huggett, National Measurement Laboratory at LGC, UK
  • Confirmed Speakers:
    • Dr Richard Molenkamp, Clinical Virology Unit, Erasmus MC, University Medical Center Rotterdam, NL
    • Melanie Smith, COVID-19 Senior Scientific Advisor, NHS Test and Trace, UK
    • Prof Maria Zambon, Deputy Director of National Infection Service & Director of Reference Microbiology Services, PHE, UK

Panel Q&A / Delegate discussion

Workstream 2

Antibody detection and protein-specific antibody response technologies
for surveillance (detection of acute or past exposure/infection) and monitoring (vaccine) response/recovery, management of suspected individuals (detection of active infection), contact tracing (asymptomatic or symptomatic acute infection)

  • Panel Lead:
    • Dr Jeremy Melanson, NRC Canada Metrology Research Centre, Canada
  • Confirmed Speakers:
    • Dr Neil Almond, NIBSC, UK
    • Prof Joelle Pelletier, University of Montreal, Canada
    • Dr Xiaobo Yu, National Center for Protein Sciences, Beijing, China

Panel Q&A / Delegate discussion

Workstream 3

Prognostic technologies
for cytokines and other biomarkers for surveillance and monitoring response/recovery

  • Panel Lead:
    • Prof Gavin O’Connor, PTB, Germany
  • Confirmed Speakers:
    • Dr Maarten Dhaenens, University of Ghent, Belgium
    • Prof Jeremy Nicholson, Murdoch University and Director, Australian National Phenome Centre, Australia
    • Dr Dorota Ruszkiewicz, Loughbourough University, UK
    • Prof Paul Thomas, Loughborough University, UK

Panel Q&A / Delegate discussion

Day 3: Roadmap development

Output: Establish a Task Group to develop the draft roadmap document, for review and publication by CCQM.

  • Chair: Dr Julian Braybrook, National Measurement Laboratory at LGC, UK
  • Confirmed Speakers:
    • Day 1 Feedback - Dr Julian Braybrook, National Measurement Laboratory at LGC, UK
    • Workstream 1 Panel Feedback – Dr Jim Huggett, National Measurement Laboratory at LGC, UK
    • Workstream 2 Panel Feedback – Dr Jeremy Melanson, NRC Canada Metrology Research Centre, Canada
    • Workstream 3 Panel Feedback – Prof Gavin O’Connor, PTB, Germany

Panel Q&A / Delegate discussion

Steering Committee

  • Julian Braybrook (Chair), LGC
  • Daniel Burke, NMIA
  • Jonathan Campbell, LGC
  • Lian-Hua Dong, NIM
  • Bernd Guettler, PTB
  • Jim Huggett, LGC
  • Elena Kulyabina, VNIIMS
  • Bae Young Kyung, KRISS
  • Jeremy Melanson, NRC
  • Gavin O’Connor, PTB
  • Sang-Ryoul Park, KRISS
  • Robert Wielgosz, BIPM
  • Ralf Josephs (Workshop Executive Secretary), BIPM

 

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