Politics, Information Technology, and Genomics

The Technology Policy Smackdown

Tomorrow, 30 October 2008, at 12:30 EDT, Douglas Holtz-Eakin, representing Sen. McCain, and former FCC Chairman Reed Hundt, representing Sen. Obama, will participate in a Technology Policy Smackdown hosted by the New America Foundation and Wired Magazine. It is a pretty lame name for a discussion of the candidates' tech agendas, but it should be interesting. The debate will be webcast live starting at 12:25 EDT (see above link for more details). Full Post

TSP news

As discussed in a previous post, the Tumor Sequencing Project has just published its initial findings from sequencing 623 genes in 188 patients with lung adenocarcinoma in Nature, Somatic mutations affect key pathways in lung adenocarcinoma. For a more non-cancer-biologist friendly take on the findings of the paper, you can read the press coverage in the Washington Post, LA Times, Science News, PBS NewsHour, US News & World Report, and Washington University MedNews. Full Post

The central dogma of cancer genomics

Today, Chris Sander, head of the Computational Biology Center at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC), gave a talk at The Genome Center. His group at MSKCC performs a wide variety of research on cancer, covering a wide range of biological scales. His talk today spanned this wide range of scales, from interpreting SNPs to modeling cellular pathways of cancer. Thanks to the central dogma of molecular biology, single-nucleotide polymorphisms can readily be translated to... Full Post

First whole Asian genome sequenced

The Beijing Genomics Institute (BGI) recently announced the completion of the first whole genome sequence of a Han Chinese individual. The genome, which they named YH, was generated from DNA donated by an individual that works at BGI. They generated over 117 Gb of data, of which nearly 103 Gb mapped back to the human reference genome, covering well over 99% of the reference. They were able to find over 3 millions SNPs, about 135,000... Full Post

Towards a cure for cancer

Recently, The Genome Center's Dr. Elaine Mardis gave a talk at the Cold Spring Harbor's Personal Genomes meeting. The topic of the talk was the ever increasing efforts of the genomics community to understand the molecular nature of cancer. In this blog, I have discussed projects like The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) and Tumor Sequencing Project (TSP), but what are we actually doing in these projects to try to better understand and, ultimately, cure cancer?... Full Post