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People in the News at Congenica, Sema4, Centogene, More

Congenica: Tom Barber 

Congenica, a UK-based firm specializing in clinical decision support for genomic data, has appointed Tom Barber as CSO. Barber most recently served as CSO at LifeOmic. Prior to that he established next-generation sequencing at Eli Lilly to identify preclinical and clinical models for personalized medicine. He has also previously worked at Beckman Coulter, where he was involved in automated NGS sample prep and clinical NGS initiatives.

Sema4: Katherine Stueland, Eric Schadt 

As part of its acquisition of GeneDx from Opko Health, Sema4 has named former GeneDx President and CEO Katherine Stueland its new CEO. She replaces Sema4 Founder Eric Schadt, who now will serve as president and chief R&D officer. This represents a change from previously announced plans for Stueland and Schadt to share the CEO role. Stueland had joined GeneDx last year after serving as chief commercial officer of Invitae.

Centogene: Volkmar Weckesser 

Volkmar Weckesser has resigned as chief information officer of Centogene. He will remain a consultant for the company until its upcoming annual general meeting. Weckesser joined Centogene in 2016.

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

The Scan

Machine Learning Helps ID Molecular Mechanisms of Pancreatic Islet Beta Cell Subtypes in Type 2 Diabetes

The approach helps overcome limitations of previous studies that had investigated the molecular mechanisms of pancreatic islet beta cells, the authors write in their Nature Genetics paper.

Culture-Based Methods, Shotgun Sequencing Reveal Transmission of Bifidobacterium Strains From Mothers to Infants

In a Nature Communications study, culture-based approaches along with shotgun sequencing give a better picture of the microbial strains transmitted from mothers to infants.

Microbial Communities Can Help Trees Adapt to Changing Climates

Tree seedlings that were inoculated with microbes from dry, warm, or cold sites could better survive drought, heat, and cold stress, according to a study in Science.

A Combination of Genetics and Environment Causes Cleft Lip

In a study published in Nature Communications, researchers investigate what combination of genetic and environmental factors come into play to cause cleft lip/palate.