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Paired Ends: Naveed Aziz, Ivan Trifunovich, Brett Ammundsen, and Others


Naveed Aziz has joined Genome Canada as director of technology programs, where he will focus on the organization's Science and Technology Innovation Centers, technology development, and bioinformatics. He joins Genome Canada from the University of York, where he served as head of genomics.

He holds a PhD in genetic engineering from the Scottish Crop Research Institute at the University of Dundee, and a masters in biotechnology from the National Institute of Biotechnology and Genetic Engineering at Quaid-i-Azam University Islamabad, and is pursuing an MBA from the University of Bradford School of Management.

Helicos BioSciences
CEO Ivan Trifunovich has taken on the role of president and CEO of WaferGen Biosystems, and will remain CEO of Helicos on a part-time basis. Prior to Helicos, Trifunovich served as senior vice president of Third Wave Technologies.

He holds a PhD in organic chemistry from the University of California, Los Angeles, and an MBA from the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School of Business.

Genomics software company Biomatters has appointed Brett Ammundsen from managing director to CEO, where he will lead the company as it moves from research applications into the clinical and consumer markets.

He holds a BA in history and a PhD in chemistry and physics from Victoria University of Wellington in New Zealand.

David Botstein, Eric Lander, and Craig Venter will share the 2012 Dan David Prize, and will split the $1 million prize the award carries.

The awards are provided in three categories — past, present, and future – and this trio of scientists won the future award for genomics research. The awards are named for Dan David, a businessman and philanthropist who died in 2011. The three winners have been recognized for their contributions to the Human Genome Project and an array of genomics research efforts, from developing microarrays and DNA sequencing technologies to computational genomics and SNP mapping, and launching labs, companies, and institutes that have driven cutting-edge genomics.

Botstein currently is a director of the Lewis-Sigler Institute for Integrative Genomics at Princeton University. Venter is founder, chairman, and president of the J. Craig Venter Institute, as well as the Institute for Genomic Research, and Celera Genomics. Lander is founding director of the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT and director of its Genome Biology Program.

The Scan

Should've Been Spotted Sooner

Scientists tell the Guardian that SARS-CoV-2 testing issues at a UK lab should have been noticed earlier.

For Martian Fuel

Researchers have outlined a plan to produce rocket fuel on Mars that uses a combination of sunlight, carbon dioxide, frozen water, cyanobacteria, and engineered E. coli, according to Gizmodo.

To Boost Rapid Testing

The Washington Post writes that new US programs aim to boost the availability of rapid at-home SARS-CoV-2 tests.

PNAS Papers on Strawberry Evolution, Cell Cycle Regulators, False-Positive Triplex Gene Editing

In PNAS this week: strawberry pan-genome, cell cycle-related roles for MDM2 and MDMX, and more.