Because more than 100 different infectious agents can cause encephalitis, establishing a diagnosis with the use of cultures, serologic tests, and pathogen-specific PCR assays can be difficult. Unbiased next-generation sequencing has the potential to revolutionize our ability to discover emerging pathogens, especially newly identified viruses [5-8]. However, the usefulness of next-generation sequencing for the diagnosis of infectious diseases in a clinically relevant timeframe is largely unexplored.  A group of scientists and medical doctors now used unbiased next-generation sequencing to identify a treatable, albeit rare, bacterial cause of meningoencephalitis. In the case they showed, the results of next-generation sequencing contributed directly to a dramatic effect on the patient's care, resulting ultimately in a favorable outcome. Thus, unbiased next-generation sequencing coupled with a rapid bioinformatics pipeline provided a clinically actionable diagnosis of a specific infectious disease from an uncommon pathogen that eluded conventional testing for months after the initial presentation. This approach facilitated the use of targeted and efficacious antimicrobial therapy.