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People In The News: Jan 20, 2012

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Life Technologies VP of Research and Development Manohar Furtado has been appointed to serve as an advisor on the National Biodefense Science Board, a federal advisory committee for the Department of Health and Human Services. The board provides advice on bioterrorism and other public health emergencies. Furtado was appointed to serve a four-year term on the board. Kevin Jarrell, CEO of Modular Genetics, also will continue to serve on the board.

Synthetic Genomics has hired George Stagnitti to be VP for nutritional products. Stagnitti's background is in the food industry. He recently was an advisor to Efficas Medical Foods and Nutrition, and Stolle Milk Products, where he led research and development for a variety of human, animal, and milk nutritional products.

Cepheid has appointed Mike Fitzgerald to the position of senior VP of human resources. Fitzgerald most recently held the same position at Verigy, and he has two decades of experience in human resources working at Vodafone and Xerox Financial Services.

The University of Western Ontario has named Richard Kim to be the inaugural holder of the new Wolfe Medical Research Chair in Pharmacogenomics, which was established by a $1.5 million gift from an anonymous donor that was matched by the University. Western Ontario recruited Kim from Vanderbilt University in 20006 to serve as head of the Division of Clinical Pharmacology in the Department of Medicine.

The Genetics Society of America has named five researchers as recipients of its 2012 awards for distinguished service in the field of genetics.

Kathryn Anderson, a biologist at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, won the Thomas Hunt Morgan Medal for lifetime contributions to the field of genetics. Anderson is a developmental biologist who has studied gene and protein interactions during embryonic development.

Joanne Chory, a plant biologist at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies, has received the Genetics Society of America Medal for outstanding contributions in genetics. Chory is director of the Plant Molecular and Cellular Biology Laboratory and an investigator with the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. Her research has focused on studies of the molecular mechanisms underlying plant development.

Therese Markow, a professor of evolutionary biology and ecology at the University of California, San Diego, has received the George W. Beadle Award for outstanding contributions to the community of genetics researchers. Markow is director of the Drosophila Species Stock Center. Her lab conducts studies of population genetics, particularly the genetic and ecological factors behind reproductive isolation.

David Micklos, founder of the DNA Learning Center at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, has received the Elizabeth W. Jones Award for Excellence in Education, which recognizes significant and sustained impact in genetics education. A science educator and writer, Micklos has worked to bring genetics and genomics resources to students and teachers in order to develop genetics education in the public.

Dana Carroll, a professor of biochemistry at the University of Utah, has received The Edward Novitski Prize, awarded for creativity and intellectual ingenuity in solving significant problems in genetics research. He was the first to adapt an enzyme, in this case zinc finger nucleases, to generate targeted chromosomal breaks at specific locations in a DNA sequence.

Algeta ASA has tapped Jeffrey Albers as company president of the new Algeta US operations, effective immediately. Albers spent the past seven years at Genzyme, where he most recently was VP of the firm's US hematology and oncology business. Before his time at Genzyme, Albers was an attorney focused on life sciences transactional work, and he was a sales representative for Pfizer.

Pacific Biosciences has appointed Marshall Mohr to serve on its board and on the board's Audit Committee. Mohr previously was senior VP and chief financial officer of Intuitive Surgical and at Adaptec. He also formerly was an audit partner with PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP.

Genetic cancer researcher Constance Griffin has passed away from pancreatic cancer. For the last 13 years, Griffin was director of the Cancer Risk Assessment Program in the oncology department at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, and since 2005 served as the interim director of the pathology department's molecular pathology division. Previously, Griffin led the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center's cytogenetics core.

The Association of Biomolecular Resource Facilities this week named Alan Marshall winner of the ABRF Annual Award for Outstanding Contributions to Biomolecular Technologies. Director of the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory ICR Program, Marshall is one of the inventors of Fourier transform ion cyclotron resonance mass spectrometry. He is a professor of chemistry and biochemistry at Florida State University.

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