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People In The News: Jun 29, 2012

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Douglas Wallace has been awarded the Gruber Foundation Genetics Prize, which carries a $500,000 award and is managed by Yale University. Wallace, who is director of the Center for Mitochondrial and Epigenomic Medicine at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia and a professor at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, received the accolade for his discoveries that have fueled the mitochondrial biology field.

He and his colleagues in the 1970s demonstrated that mtDNA coded for heritable traits and that human mtDNA is inherited solely through the mother. That led to later discoveries and new lines of research into inherited mtDNA diseases and related mutations, as well as molecular anthropology, such as the reconstruction of mtDNA lineages leading to the conclusion that humans are descended from an African ancestor.

The University of South Florida has named Stephen Liggett its new vice dean for personalized medicine and genomics. Additionally, Liggett will be the associate VP for personalized medicine at the USF Morsani College of Medicine and the director of the university's Personalized Medicine Institute.

Liggett comes to USF from the University of Maryland School of Medicine, where he was associate dean for interdisciplinary research and director of the cardiopulmonary genomics program.

Complete Genomics' stockholders voted to elect Andrew Senyei to the board of directors for a three-year term until the 2015 annual stockholder meeting. He serves as the managing director at Enterprise Partners Venture Capital. Previously, he was an adjunct associate professor of obstetrics, gynecology, and pediatrics at the University of California, Irvine.

Sequenom has appointed Carolyn Beaver vice president and chief accounting officer. Previously, she held various positions at Beckman Coulter, including most recently as corporate vice president and controller. She also currently serves as a director of Commerce National Bank. She holds a BS in accounting from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona.

HTG Molecular Diagnostics has named Steve Hagan to be VP of molecular diagnostic sales. Hagan previously was at Ventana Medical Systems, where he was senior director of digital pathology and workflow commercialization.

Allegro Diagnostics, a developer of a gene expression test to detect early signs of lung cancer, has named its clinical and scientific advisory board.

The board members include: Jerome Brody, a professor of medicine and director of the Pulmonary Center at the Boston University School of Medicine; Armin Ernst, a professor of medicine at Tufts School of Medicine and chief of the Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care, and Sleep Medicine at St. Elizabeth's Medical Center; Scott Ferguson, an associate professor at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health; Gerard Silvestri, a professor in the Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine at the Medical University of South Carolina; Avrum Spira, a professor and chief of the Division of Computational Biomedicine at the Boston University School of Medicine; and Anil Vachani, an assistant professor at the University of Pennsylvania's School of Medicine, Pulmonary, Allergy, and Critical Care Division.

Accelrys shareholders this week voted to re-elect company President and CEO Max Carnecchia and Timothy Harkness to serve on its board of directors through 2015, according to a recent filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission.

Professor Janet Thornton, director of the European Molecular Biology Laboratory's European Bioinformatics Institute in Cambridge, UK, has been named a dame commander of the Order of the British Empire for her contribution to the bioinformatics field. Her research has focused on using computational methods to understand protein structure and function, and how they relate to aging, and she developed a classification system for proteins.

Thornton has been director of EMBL-EBI since 2001, and she formerly was director of the Biomolecular Structure and Modeling Unit at University College London. She also has been involved in coordinating the preparatory phase of the ELIXIR research infrastructure that will serve as a hub for European life science research data.

Ezose Sciences has appointed VP of Business Development Scott Siegel to the new post of chief operating officer. In addition to the new role, Siegel, who formerly was VP of corporate development at Redpoint Bio and held a range of posts at Becton Dickinson, Johnson & Johnson, and other companies, will continue to lead business development, the company said. Ezose also has appointed Diane McCarthy, a longtime consultant to the company, to be director of scientific affairs.

Miraculins has appointed fund manager Jim Mellon to serve on its board of directors, taking the place of Noah Billick, who has resigned from the board for personal reasons. Mellon, who is a "significant shareholder" in the company, Miraculins said this week, is an international investor with two main business operations, a fund management company called Charlemagne Capital and the Asian mining group Regent Pacific.

DiaGenic has named Paul de Potocki as president and CEO, effective in September.

De Potocki will succeed Henrik Lund, who had been Oslo-based DiaGenic's interim CEO since April. He most recently served as CEO of Aerocrine. He has also served as senior vice president of commercial and strategic development at Biovitrium and executive vice president of strategic marketing at Fresenius Kabi.

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