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People in the News at ARPA-H, Caris Life Sciences, Fabric Genomics, More

ARPA-H: Renee Wegrzyn

President Joe Biden has appointed Renee Wegrzyn as the first director of the Advanced Research Projects Agency for Health (ARPA-H). She will be responsible for driving the agency's research portfolio and budget. Wegrzyn comes to ARPA-H from Ginkgo Bioworks, where she was VP of business development and head of innovation at the firm's Concentric testing and biosecurity subsidiary. Prior to that, she was a program manager at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) in the Biological Technologies Office. She is a member of the scientific advisory board of the Innovative Genomics Institute and a member of the standing committee on biotechnology capabilities and national security needs of the National Academy of Sciences. Wegrzyn holds a doctorate in molecular biology and bioengineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology.

Caris Life Sciences: Russ Denton

Russ Denton has joined Caris Life Sciences as senior VP, general counsel, and secretary, leading Caris' legal and corporate governance efforts. Previously, he was a partner at Shearman & Sterling, where he worked with Caris as outside counsel in connection with the firm's growth equity financing transactions. Before that, he was a partner at Andrews Kurth Kenyon and an associate at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher and Flom. Denton received a J.D. from Stanford Law School and a B.S. from Duke University.

Fabric Genomics: Sean Hofherr

Fabric Genomics has hired Sean Hofherr as chief commercial officer and clinical director. Hofherr, a fellow of the American College of Medical Genetics and Genomics, had been executive VP and CLIA laboratory director at GeneDx, which was acquired by Sema4 in April. Prior to that, he helped build the clinical diagnostics program at Children’s National Hospital in Washington, D.C.

For additional recent items on executive appointments, promotions, and departures in the omics and molecular diagnostics space, please see the People in the News page on our website.

The Scan

ChatGPT Does As Well As Humans Answering Genetics Questions, Study Finds

Researchers in the European Journal of Human Genetics had ChatGPT answer genetics-related questions, finding it was about 68 percent accurate, but sometimes gave different answers to the same question.

Sequencing Analysis Examines Gene Regulatory Networks of Honeybee Soldier, Forager Brains

Researchers in Nature Ecology & Evolution find gene regulatory network differences between soldiers and foragers, suggesting bees can take on either role.

Analysis of Ashkenazi Jewish Cohort Uncovers New Genetic Loci Linked to Alzheimer's Disease

The study in Alzheimer's & Dementia highlighted known genes, but also novel ones with biological ties to Alzheimer's disease.

Tara Pacific Expedition Project Team Finds High Diversity Within Coral Reef Microbiome

In papers appearing in Nature Communications and elsewhere, the team reports on findings from the two-year excursion examining coral reefs.