We’d like to draw your attention to the 31st Lorne Genome Conference, which will take place from 14-16 Feb 2010 in Lorne (near Melbourne, Australia).
Each year this conference features the best and newest research into the Organisation and Expression of the Genome and we have again assembled a line-up of invited Australian and International speakers to rival any similar meeting around the world (see details below).
Lorne is a picturesque seaside resort on Australia’s south coast that will serve you well as a conference location but perhaps also as a starting point for a touristic tour of Australia that you may have had in mind for some time…
More detailed information, as well as facilities for conference registration and abstract submission can be found at
We look forward to seeing you at Lorne,
Ross Hannan & Thomas Preiss (on behalf of the national conference organizing committee)
Professor Alan Cooper was awarded a prestigious Australian Research Council Federation Fellowship in 2004, allowing him to move from Oxford University (where he was the Director of the Henry Wellcome Ancient Biomolecules Centre)to Adelaide in 2005 to establish the Australian Centre for Ancient DNA. Prof. Cooper specialises in using ancient DNA to record and study evolutionary
processes in real time, especially those associated with environmental change.
His work ranges over timescales of hundreds of years old (eg museum
specimens) to permafrost-preserved bones of mammals and sediment dating to
>300 kyr. Recent research highlights include the use of Ice Age mammal
populations to record the effects of environmental change, the first complete
mitochondrial genome sequences of any extinct species (two New Zealand
moas), and the study of how evolutionary rates change over time. Prof. Cooper's
current research features studies of Australian megafaunal species, permafrost
preserved material from the Arctic and Antarctic, ancient human DNA and DNA
from sedimentary deposits.
Professor Thomas Gingeras is Professor and Head of Functional Genomics at
Cold Spring Harbour Laboratory, NY. He received his PhD from New York
University, followed by postdoctoral and faculty positions at Cold Spring Harbor
Laboratory, under Nobel Laureate Dr Richard Roberts. He then moved to the
Salk Institute, then in 1990 moved into the commercial world becoming the
Director of Life Sciences, Baxter Healthcare, Inc, while keeping an appointment
at the University of California, San Diego. Professor Gingeras then became Vice
President of Biological Sciences at Affymetrix, Inc in 1993, before recently
leaving that post and once more establishing a laboratory at Cold Spring
Harbour. Professor Gingeras has been at the forefront of research describing the
pervasive nature of the transcriptome from yeast to man. His recent research
focuses on understanding the full complement of transcription products, their
processing, influence on gene expression and ultimately roles in disease.
Professor Tom Gonda is Head of the Molecular Oncognesis Laboratory at the
Diamantina Institute, Qld Australia. Prof. Gonda carried out postdoctoral research
at the University of California, San Francisco in the laboratory of Nobel Laureate
Professor J Michael Bishop. After returning to Australia Professor Gonda‚s
continuing interest in leukaemia and the myb oncogene has expanded to include
retroviral vectors, cytokines and leukaemia. Currently his work is heavily focused
on forward and reverse genetics to functionally screen the human genome for
novel oncogenes and tumor suppressors with the long-term goal to enhance our
understanding of cancer and to apply the results to developing novel cancer
Dr Philip Gregory is the Vice President of Research at Sangamo. After gaining
a B.Sc. in microbiology from the University of Sheffield, and a D. Phil in
Biochemistry from the University of Oxford, he studied the role of chromatin
structure in gene regulation at the University of Munich. Since joining Sangamo
in 2000, Gregory has helped steer the development of engineered DNA-binding
zinc fingers (ZnFs) that regulate gene expression and modification. Recent
developments in this area include the used of designed ZnF-nucleases to enable
the targeted disruption of genes in zebrafish and mammalian cells.
Dr. Shiv Grewal is a Senior Investigator at the Laboratory of Molecular Cell
Biolgy, National Cancer Institute where he is Head of the Chromosome Biology
Section. Dr. Grewal‚s research is focused on the epigenetic control of higher-
order chromatin assembly and he has made major contributions to our
understanding of the dynamic regulation of chromatin structure. Recent work by
the Grewal laboratory showing a connection between RNAi and heterochromatin
formation was selected 'Breakthrough of the Year' by Science magazine. Dr.
Grewal has been awarded the Demerec-Kaufmann award in develomental
biology, the 1999 Ellison Medical Foundation new scholar award, the Newcomb
Cleveland prize by the American Association for Advancement of Science, NIH
Directors's award and the NIH Merit award. Dr. Grewal is on the editorial board of
Epigenetics and Chromatin.
Professor Matthias W. Hentze, M.D., is an Associate Director of the EMBL in
Germany, and Co-Director of the Molecular Medicine Partnership Unit. Matthias
Hentze has made major contributions to our understanding of the regulation of
translation by RNA-binding proteins and microRNAs, and the impact that errors
in RNA processing and translation have on the ontogeny, progression, diagnosis
and therapeutics of human disease. Professor Hentze is a strong proponent of
translational research. He is on the editorial boards of Molecular Cell, EMBO
Journal and Trends in Biochemical Sciences.
Professor Douglas Hilton is the Director of the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute,
Research Professor of Medical Biology, and Head of the Department of Medical
Biology at the University of Melbourne. Professor Hilton‚s research has focussed
on communication between cells. As a research student he was a member of the
team that purified LIF - now used worldwide to culture cells. Hilton‚s laboratory
discovered the Suppressors of Cytokine Signalling (SOCS) proteins. In
collaboration with Warren Alexander and Benjamin Kile, he recently established
a program using large-scale mouse genetics and genomics to identify which
genes regulate blood cell formation. He is an inventor on more than 20 patent
families and cofounded Murigen. Professor Hilton has received many prizes and
awards for his research, including the Amgen Medical Researcher Award, the
Health Minister‚s Award for Excellence in Health and Medical Research and the
GSK Australia Award for Research Excellence. He is a Fellow and Council
Member of the Australian Academy of Science.
Dr. Nicholas Ingolia has been a post-doc in the laboratory of Jonathan
Weissman, HHMI, University of California, San Francisco since 2006 after
receiving his PhD in Molecular Biology from Harvard University. Nicholas has a
major focus in systems biology and has recently published a method for analysis
in vivo of translation based on the deep sequencing of ribosome-protected
mRNA fragments that enables genome-wide analysis of translation. This method
gives an instantaneous readout of protein translation and bridges the gap
between mRNA abundance as measured by microarrays and protein abundance.
Professor Brian McStay is the SFI Professor of Genetics at NUI Galway,
Ireland. After completing his PhD at the University of Edinburgh, Professor
McStay carried out Post-Doctoral studies at the Fred Hutchinson Centre in
Seattle before returning to the UK to set up a lab at the University of Dundee,
moving to Ireland in 2008. Over his career Professor McStay has made major
contributions to our understanding of the expression of the ribosomal RNA genes
including the impact of epigenetics, transcription, chromosome structure and
rRNA processing. Recent discoveries have demonstrated the utility of using
pseudo-nucleolar-organizer-regions (integrated arrays of transcriptionally silent
NOR mimics), which nevertheless form specialized chromatin structures in a
similar manner to NORs.
Professor Barbara Meyer is a Howard Hughes Investigator and Professor of
Genetics, Genomics and Development at the University of California, Berkeley.
Professor Meyer has made major contributions to our understanding of how
worms determine their sex. Like mammals, worms specify sex with a particular
set of sex chromosomes: Animals with one X chromosome (XO) are males, while
animals with two Xs (XX) develop into hermaphrodites, a sex that can produce
both eggs and sperm. Barbara discovered the master gene involved in sex
determination, and her recent work has revealed a role for condensin like
molecules in regulating dosage compensation in worms, to ensure that the level
of expression of X-linked genes in hermaphrodite and male worms is equivalent.
Barbara is an associate editor of Genetics and is on the Board of Trustees for the
Professor Marjorie Oettinger is Professor in the Department of Genetics of
Harvard University and also holds an appointment in the Department of
Molecular Biology, Massachusetts General Hospital. Her laboratory studies
molecular mechanisms involved in antibody gene rearrangements, including both
the enzymology of how RAG proteins cleave and recombine immunoglobulin
genes, as well as regulation of this process by chromatin structure in developing
lymphocytes. Her laboratory recently elucidated how RAG2 binds to a specific
histone modification as a prerequisite for primary antibody gene diversification,
and identified a mutation of a key residue involved in this interaction as the cause
of an inherited immunodeficiency syndrome. Professor Oettinger has received
numerous awards throughout her career, including as Pew Scholar and
Leukemia Society Scholar.
Professor Craig Pikaard is the Carlos O. Miller Professor of Plant Growth and
Development, and he has joint appointments in the Department of Biology and
the new Department of Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry at Indiana University.
Professor Pikaard‚s main research achievements include the identification and
characterization of RNA polymerases IV and V, and their roles in RNA-directed
DNA methylation. He has recently shown that Pol V transcripts serve as a
scaffold to recruit silencing complexes to target genes. He has also been
instrumental in determining the molecular basis for nucleolar dominance, the
selective silencing of one parental set of rRNA genes in hybrid plants.
Professor Paul Rainey is Professor of evolutionary genetics at the New Zealand
Institute for Advanced Study and director of the Allan Wilson Centre for Molecular
Ecology & Evolution. He is also visiting professor at Stanford and senior adjunct
researcher at the Swiss Federal Institute for Aquatic Science & Technology
(EAWAG). After completing his PhD at the University of Canterbury he moved to
the UK to take up fellowships in Cambridge and subsequently, Oxford. As a
faculty member of the Department of Plant Sciences at the University of Oxford,
Professor Rainey's pioneering work in bacterial evolution using experimental
populations of Pseudomonas fluorescens has resulted in a series of Nature
publications. In 2003 he returned to New Zealand as Chair of Ecology and
Evolution at the University of Auckland. In 2007 he moved his lab to Massey
University's Albany campus and was elected to the Academy of the Royal
Society of New Zealand.
Dr. John Rinn is an Assistant Professor of pathology at Harvard Medical School
and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and an associate member of the
Broad Institute. Dr. Rinn completed his PhD with Mike Snyder in 2004 and since
then has rapidly established himself in the field of non-coding RNAs. His
research aims to understand the role of large non-coding RNA in establishing the
distinct epigenetic states of adult and embryonic cells and their misregulation in
cancer. By exploiting multiple high-throughput genomic technologies his group is
actively discovering and functionally characterizing an abundance of these
mysterious molecules throughout the human genome. This work has revealed
the ability of large non-coding RNAs to silence large genomic regions via
chromatin-associated factors that could be further developed as novel cancer
therapeutics that target and silence overactive oncogenes in cancer.
Dr. Pardis Sabeti is an Assistant Professor at Harvard University in the Center
for Systems Biology and the Department of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology
In work published in Nature in 2002 with Professor Eric Lander, Dr. Sabeti
developed an approach to detect genes that are undergoing natural selection in
the human genome. In her post-doctoral work she further developed analysis and
software tools to study entire genomes. The goals of the Sabeti lab are to use
computational methods and genomics to understand mechanisms of evolutionary
adaptation in humans and pathogens.
Dr. John Stamatoyannopoulos is an Assistant Professor of Genome Sciences
and of Medicine in the Division of Medical Oncology at the University of
Washington in Seattle. The Stamatoyannopoulos lab combines classical
molecular biology with high-throughput instrumentation and informatics to
address basic questions about genome organization, evolution, and function.
Ultimately, he seeks to understand the relationship between the physical
structure of the living genome and its function ˆ and how that function may go
awry in disease. In particular, Dr. Stamatoyannopoulos is a leading architect of
large epigenomic analyses including genome-scale mapping of chromatin
structure and DNaseI hypersensitive sites and DNA methylation profiling. This
research has included a leading role in the ENCyclopedia of DNA elements
(ENCODE) project. Dr. Stamatoyannopoulos is also the head of the Northwest
Reference Epigenome Mapping Center, one of 4 recently funded under the NIH
Roadmap for Medical Research Epigenomic Program.
Professor Michael Stratton is Deputy Director of the Wellcome Trust Sanger
Institute, where he is Head of the Cancer Genome Project. He is also Professor
of Cancer Genetics at the Institute of Cancer Research. Professor Stratton's
research achievements in cancer genetics include the identification of the high
risk breast cancer susceptibility gene, BRCA2, and more recently moderate risk
susceptibility genes such as CHEK2, ATM, BRIP and PALB2. His work for the
Cancer Genome Project has led to the discovery of activating somatic mutations
in the BRAF and ERBB2 genes in melanoma and lung cancer. He was elected a
Fellow of the Royal Society in 2008.
Professor Kevin Struhl is the David Wesley Gaiser Professor in the Department
of Biological Chemistry at Harvard Medical School. Following undergraduate
studies at MIT, PhD work at Stanford University and a postdoctoral period at the
MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge UK, Kevin Struhl joined the
faculty in 1982. Professor Struhl has made seminal contributions to the
understanding of fundamental molecular mechanisms regulating transcription
with numerous publications in Nature, Cell and Science, and he has recently
started to study transcriptional control mechanisms and micro-RNAs involved in
cellular transformation and establishment of cancer stem cells. Professor Struhl
is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and a
Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
Dr. Hiroki Ueda, MD PhD, is the leader of the Systems Biology Laboratory,
Functional Genomics Subunit, Center for Developmental Biology, at RIKEN in
Japan. He is a Visiting Professor at Tokushima University and Invited Professor
in Biology at Osaka University, and in Mathematics at Kyoto University. His
research interests include system-level understanding of chronobiology, and
applying this understanding to systems-based medicine for human disease.
While an undergraduate student, he worked as a research assistant at Sony
Computer Science Laboratories. As a graduate Dr. Ueda worked at Yamanouchi
Pharmaceutical, on a project studying biological clock mechanisms in fly and
mouse. Amongst other awards, he has received a Japan Innovator Award (Nikkei
Business Publications Inc. 2004) for his invention of a method for diagnosing
body time and rhythm disorders, which opens up the new possibility of
chronotherapy and personalized medicine. He recently solved the fundamental
problem in chronobiology on the underling mechanism of singularity behaviour of
the circadian clock that had been unsolved for more than 30 years. He received a
Young Investigator Promotion Awards (Japanese Society for Chronobiology,
2007) for this discovery.