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Kathy Hudson, Next-Gen Sequencing on the Rise, Centers of Excellence in Genomic Sciences, and More

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Kathy Hudson, director of the Genetics and Public Policy Center at Johns Hopkins University, appeared on the cover of last year's October issue of Genome Technology. In the cover story on personalized medicine's move into the clinic, Hudson was cautiously optimistic. "I think in general the hype has exceeded the reality, but there is reason to be excited and optimistic," she said then. Hudson is now expected to join the National Institutes of Health as chief of staff to Director Francis Collins. Prior to founding Hopkins' policy center in 2002, Hudson was assistant director of the National Human Genome Research Institute.

Also in last year's issue, GT took a look at how the next-generation — and third-generation — sequencing platforms were faring. Roche 454 was just launching its new Titanium chemistry, Illumina's Genome Analyzer had upgraded to the GAII, and ABI was looking forward to the release of its SOLiD HT System. Currently, the next-gen companies are gaining slightly. Roche's Applied Science section, which includes 454, had an 8 percent gain in sales during the first half of 2009 as compared to 2008; Illumina reported a 15 percent increase in second-quarter revenue for 2009; and Life Technologies says its Genetic Systems division, which includes SOLiD, saw a 5.5 percent increase in second-quarter revenues.

Back in 2004, the GT cover story discussed the Centers of Excellence in Genomic Sciences program. Nine institutes were given $3 million a year for five years to carve out a place for themselves in integrated genomics. Since then, Deirdre Meldrum, who was at the University of Washington's CEGSTech, was named a dean of engineering at Arizona State University, where she also directs the Center for EcoGenomics. Mike Snyder, another CEGS leader, was then at Yale's Human Genome Analysis center and recently headed to Stanford University to lead the Center of Genomics and Personalized Medicine.

A news story five years ago asked readers to consider the CNP, now better known as a CNV. Jonathan Sebat — then a postdoc in Michael Wigler's lab — and his colleagues at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory developed a method called representational oligonucleotide microarray analysis to measure how common CNVs are. Since then, Sebat has started his own lab at Cold Spring Harbor; this past summer, he published a paper in Genome Research on a computational approach to detect CNVs. He and his colleagues plan to apply their method to the 1,000 Genomes Project and to a large-scale schizophrenia study.

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