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People In The News: Sep 9, 2011

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – The National Human Genome Research Institute this week appointed Mark Guyer, current director of NHGRI's Division of Extramural Research, to be the institute's deputy director, and promoted James Mullikin to be director of its Intramural Sequencing Center (NISC) from his present post as acting director.

Guyer has been with NHGRI since 1988, when it was called the Office for Human Genome Research and was then led by James Watson. In his new role, Guyer will focus on developing basic genomics research efforts at the institute and implementing its strategic plan.

Mullikin will take over the responsibilities of former NISC Director and current NHGRI Director Eric Green. He has been at NISC since 2003, and has been acting director for the past two years. Before joining NHGRI, Mullikin led the production informatics department at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, where he developed sample and data tracking systems and automated sequence assembly tools for the Human Genome Project.

Expression Analysis has appointed Jeff Fitzgerald to be director of business development. Fitzgerald formerly worked in sales at Affymetrix, where he supported the firm's genome and academic research business, and he cultivated business in research and clinical markets at RainDance Technologies. He also was a cancer biomarker researcher at Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School.

Orion Genomics has named Steven Smith VP of bioinformatics. In the role, he will be responsible for leading bioinformatics infrastructure for Orion's diagnostics and genomics business services unit. Smith previously was VP of bioinformatics at NimbleGen Systems and he was owner of Genesmith Informatics, a consulting firm specializing in bioinformatics support.

Pharmacogenomics company AssureRx has named a trio of new additions to its senior management, including Anthony Altar as senior VP and chief science officer; Karen Schellin as VP of Finance; and Alexander Burges as VP of marketing. Before joining AssureRx, Altar worked at Alere and led a diagnostics collaboration with the Banchette Rockefeller Neuroscience Institute. Schellin was the associate VP of operations for EyeMed Vision Care, and Burgess was the director of corporate marketing at MedAssurant.

Biomarker developer Gentris Corporation said this week that it has named David Drutz to chair its board of directors and it has appointed Tim Gupton to be a board member as well. Drutz is a former professor and chief of infectious diseases at the University of Texas Health Science Center, and he founded and directed the National Science Foundation Center for Cell Regulation in San Antonio. He also worked in corporate drug discovery and clinical research, and co-founded the drug developer Tranzyme Pharma.

Gupton is a certified public accountant and a partner with Hughes, Pittman & Gupton, he is chief financial officer for CoLucid Pharmaceuticals, and he was a founder and general partner for Research Triangle Ventures, which is an investor in Gentris.

CombiMatrix said this week that Jeff Hayes has been named director of sales handling the firm's oncology market. Hayes has more than two decades experience in the cancer diagnostics and biopharmaceuticals markets, including working in marketing management positions at Schering-Plough and Eli Lilly and in sales management at US Labs and Plus Diagnostics.

The Garvan Institute in Sydney has tapped John Mattick to be its next executive director as of January 2012, replacing the current Executive Director John Shine, who has led the institute since 1990 and plans to retire at the end of the year. Mattick, whose research has focused on the role of RNA and gene regulation in epigenetics, is currently at the Institute for Molecular Bioscience in Queensland.

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