Sequencing or not sequencing

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Ji-Dong Gu


Technology has been playing a very important role in the advancement of science, and big breakthroughs in science are dependent upon technologies available from time to time. Between science and technology, a good understanding is required so that available technologies can be used most efficiently and effectively to solving the targeted questions in scientific research. Genome nucleotide sequencing as an available technology after several generations of the technical improvement is capable of extract the full nucleotide sequences of any single organism or a mixed population of organisms in a given sample. This technology has a major important role in medicine and health science for diagnosis of the microorganisms and early detection of genetic diseases. In microbial ecology and applied microbiology, it is now fashionable to sequence the microbial community, the microbiome, so that the community composition and diversity are described from air, soil, water, sludge to skin and gut of animals, including humans. This routine practice, too frequently used by far too many, neither provide any significant insights of knowledge nor unravel the fundamental science in any way, but it serves as a cosmetic decoration for publication mostly. Because of this, not sequencing or sequencing less is the view expressed here to alert researchers for a better focus on the research questions, and the selection and implementation of the necessary physical science methods to obtain the solid research data that can advance science in a significant way. Publication driven experiments to produce more papers are eroding the essence of science, especially the pure spirit of science.


Sequencing; Scientific questions; Science; Publication; Spirit of science

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