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Where are they now?: Feb 1, 2002


The February 2001 issue of GT profiled Generation G: 16 rising stars of the new biology. Over the past year, these youngsters have continued to prove themselves movers and shakers, and many have made repeat appearances in issues of GT (including this one) as they went to new companies or did other noteworthy things. Updates for a handful of our first Gen G players:


Steven Brenner: The UC-Berkeley professor made news last year when he warned colleagues about academic IP concerns at the Bioinformatics Open Source Conference held in Copenhagen. Though Brenner’s carefully stipulated contract allows him to contribute to open-source projects, he said most academics don’t have that luxury, so when they contribute to open-source work with advances a university might otherwise lay claim to, they are likely doing so illegally.


Rowan Chapman: The former business development honcho for Rosetta Inpharmatics was bumped out of the picture after Merck’s acquisition of the bioinformatics company, but resurfaced in late 2001 as entrepreneur-in-residence at Mohr, Davidow Ventures. (See story in this issue, p. 18)


Cyrus Harmon: The grad school drop-out who founded Neomorphic, acquired by Affymetrix for $70 million, last fall took a three-year leave from business to return to Gerry Rubin’s UC Berkeley lab to complete a PhD in genetics and to pursue a side career as producer of independent films. Harmon’s new modest ambition: be the first person to win an Oscar and a Nobel Prize.


Chris Marcazzo: Still Lion’s director of product marketing and still single, Marcazzo hasn’t yet acquired the Italian villa he dreamed about, but joined the ranks of fellow Gen G speed demons Ewan Birney, Harmon, and Sasinowski when he bought himself a Porsche for racing on the Autobahn.


Maciek Sasinowski and Heather Sasinowska: The couple, told by two tarot card readers at GSAC 2001 to be expecting their first child soon, won a $2 million NIST grant and moved their company, Incogen, from Clemson, SC, to Williamsburg, Va. (See story in this issue, p. 28)


Christophe Schilling: CTO and co-founder of Genomatica, Schilling’s company was awarded $2 million in grants from the US Department of Energy over the next three years to develop in silico technology.

The Scan

Expanded Genetic Testing Uncovers Hereditary Cancer Risk in Significant Subset of Cancer Patients

In Genome Medicine, researchers found pathogenic or likely pathogenic hereditary cancer risk variants in close to 17 percent of the 17,523 patients profiled with expanded germline genetic testing.

Mitochondrial Replacement Therapy Embryos Appear Largely Normal in Single-Cell 'Omics Analyses

Embryos produced with spindle transfer-based mitochondrial replacement had delayed demethylation, but typical aneuploidy and transcriptome features in a PLOS Biology study.

Cancer Patients Report Quality of Life Benefits for Immune Checkpoint Inhibitors

Immune checkpoint inhibitor immunotherapy was linked in JAMA Network Open to enhanced quality of life compared to other treatment types in cancer patients.

Researchers Compare WGS, Exome Sequencing-Based Mendelian Disease Diagnosis

Investigators find a diagnostic edge for whole-genome sequencing, while highlighting the cost advantages and improving diagnostic rate of exome sequencing in EJHG.