Author Archives: Rana Smalling

About Rana Smalling

Rana Smalling, PhD joined our team as a Field Application Scientist in September of 2021. Rana is a Jamaican native who is passionate about using biomedical research and science communication to bring about better healthcare solutions. She earned a Bachelor’s degree in Biological Sciences from the University of Chicago, a PhD in Biochemistry from the University of Utah and completed postdoctoral research at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. She has used both lab bench and bioinformatics approaches to identify novel regulators and potential biomarkers in cancer and metabolic diseases. Rana enjoys providing support and training to Golden Helix customers. When she is not working, she likes to learn about the medicinal uses of plants, fungi and microbes, and she enjoys road trips, singing and listening to music.

Customizing Your Clinical Reports: Reordering the Variant List

         June 7, 2022

Oftentimes, the endpoint of a clinical variant analysis is a standardized, clinical report. As such, we ship a number of default templates with VSClinical for users to report their findings. But these templates are just a starting point! Our platform allows users to fully customize their reports to adhere to lab-specific preferences. We have shared a plethora of how-to’s on… Read more »

Import CNVs from any secondary caller using VarSeq

         May 25, 2022

Advances in high-throughput sequencing have allowed us to be able to detect structural variants such as copy number variants in addition to small variants such as SNVs and indels. We provide users with an industry-leading CNV calling algorithm to detect CNVs directly from their next-generation sequencing data including whole genome, whole exome, and gene panel datasets, and also import CNVs… Read more »

Mining Curated Databases for Literature in VSClinical

         April 29, 2022

Curated databases are a real time saver when compiling published evidence to support your variant evaluations and classifications. Leveraging the curated databases at your fingertips in our VSClinical variant interpretation hub is even more efficient. Not only does VSClinical provides users with automated variant classification for germline variants according to the ACMG guidelines and somatic variants according to the AMP… Read more »

VarSeq Template Design Recommendations: Single Sample Variant Filtering

         April 6, 2022

When doing next-generation sequencing (NGS) analysis in VarSeq, the fundamental goal is to develop efficient ways to filter through your NGS data. If you are just getting started with Varseq, a pre-designed project template can really come in handy for variant filtering! This blog series will cover a number of template design recommendations for variant filtering on data types ranging… Read more »

Reporting Secondary Germline Variants in VSClinical AMP

         March 2, 2022
Reporting Secondary Germline Variants in VSClinical AMP

Tumor profiling via next generation sequencing (NGS) often reveals secondary germline variants that may constitute important incidental findings. In May 2021, the American College of Medical Genetics and Genomics (ACMG) released an updated policy statement for reporting incidental findings in exome and genome sequencing data along with a corresponding list of genes. These recommendations state that laboratories should report pathogenic… Read more »

Integrating Custom Gene Panels for Variant Annotations Q&A Follow Up

         February 16, 2022
Integrating Custom Gene Panels for Variant Annotations

Thanks to all those who attended the recent webcast by Dr. Rana Smalling, “Integrating Custom Gene Panels for Variant Annotations”. If you were unable to attend or would like to recap, here is a link to watch the broadcast. We covered a lot of content regarding virtual gene panels, and there were several questions submitted during our Q&A session that… Read more »

How to Create Your Own CNV Frequency Catalog

         January 20, 2022
cnv frequency catalog

Global population frequency catalogs like 1kG Phase 3, gnomAD, DGV, and others are excellent resources for identifying rare variants in your copy number variant (CNV) analysis. However, they are not exhaustive, and the reality is a lot of variants that are missing from global population frequency catalogs are still common variants. At the same time, CNVs that are identified by… Read more »

Highlights from Advanced Report Customization in VSClinical Webcast: Somatic Reports

         January 6, 2022
advanced somatic report customization in vsclinical

In our previous blog, we covered the highlights of our Advanced Report Customization in VSClinical webcast in the context of germline clinical reports. Now, we bring you the next of the series: somatic clinical reports. In the recent webcast, Advanced Report Customization, we covered a range of somatic-focused clinical reports, demonstrating how easy it is to create AMP guideline-based clinical… Read more »

Breaking Down ACMG CNV Guidelines in VSClinical

         November 25, 2021

In February 2020, the American College of Medical Genetics (ACMG) and the Clinical Genome Resource (ClinGen) published a joint consensus on standards for the interpretation and reporting of copy number variants (CNVs) ranging from large CNVs spanning multiple genes to small intragenic events1. The guidelines consist of over 80 different criteria which are arranged into five distinct sections. These extensive… Read more »