University of St Andrews

Infection and Global Health Research Division

IGH 5 Research 5 Public health genomics

Public health genomics

Whole genome sequencing (WGS) is a powerful tool for pathogen surveillance which allows public health agencies to track the spread of pathogens and monitor their evolution in response to interventions such as vaccination. It has also become the gold standard diagnostic tool of detecting and investigating outbreaks. Our translational research has played a key role in developing and applying WGS in a clinical context, and its integration national and international pathogen surveillance and public health responses. Members of the Division were responsible for the implementation of WGS for SARS-CoV-2 to support pandemic response in the UK and abroad and continue lead the strategic development of national pathogen genomics programs.

Principal Investigators


Prof Matthew Holden



Prof Stephen Gillespie


Prof Deborah Williamson

Professor of Medicine

Projects of Interest