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Helix Launches a COVID-19 Viral Surveillance Dashboard to Track Emergence and Prevalence of New SARS-CoV-2 Variants

With state-level data and weekly updates, the Helix COVID-19 Surveillance Dashboard supports national efforts to better track and understand the continued evolution of SARS-CoV-2

SAN MATEO, Calif., January 21, 2021 -- Helix, the leading population genomics company, announced the launch of the Helix® COVID-19 Surveillance Dashboard. This analysis stems from Helix’s extensive COVID-19 testing experience, using Thermo Fisher Scientific’s TaqPath™ COVID-19 Combo Kit combined with viral sequencing under the collaboration Helix recently announced with Illumina, with support from the CDC. The initial focus is on the SARS-CoV-2 B.1.1.7 variant, a more contagious variant originally discovered in the UK. As new variants emerge in the US, the dashboard will be updated to track those as well. To date, Helix has helped to identify over 100 cases of B.1.1.7, the vast majority of all cases identified to date in the US.

The dashboard, which can be found at, includes regularly updated figures showing:

  • Total B.1.1.7 cases by state
  • B.1.1.7 cases identified by day
  • S gene target failure (SGTF) as a percentage of positive cases over time
  • B.1.1.7 cases as a percentage of SGTF cases by state

While prior Helix research showed that only a subset of samples with SGTF harbor all the variants that define B.1.1.7, SGTF prevalence is still an important metric to monitor. Rapid increases in this rate, which can be evaluated without needing to sequence samples, may serve as an indicator that B.1.1.7 is becoming prevalent in the community

Going forward, a randomized subset of samples not exhibiting SGTF will also be sequenced to expand the variants Helix is able to detect. Results of this will be posted in this dashboard as they are available.

The Helix® COVID-19 Surveillance Dashboard will only reflect cases identified by Helix and does not include those identified by other organizations. Numbers may differ from other publicly reported dashboards due to a time lag from reporting of the cases to public health departments to updating of other databases. As new strains and approaches for predicting the prevalence data will be added to the dashboard. The dashboard can be found at

About Helix

Helix is the leading population genomics company operating at the intersection of clinical care, research, and genomics. Its end-to-end platform enables health systems, life sciences companies, and payers to advance genomic research and accelerate the integration of genomic data into clinical care. Powered by one of the world’s largest CLIA / CAP next-generation sequencing labs and the first and only FDA authorized whole exome sequencing platform, Helix supports all aspects of population genomics including recruitment and engagement, clinically actionable disease screening, return of results, and basic and translational research. In response to the COVID-19 public health crisis, Helix has launched a sensitive and scalable end-to-end COVID-19 test system to meet the needs of health systems, employers, governments, and other organizations across the country. Learn more at