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People In The News: May 7, 2010

By a GenomeWeb staff reporter

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Human genome sequencing pioneer Leroy Hood has been awarded the 2010 Kistler Prize — a $100,000 award named after Walter Kistler, who is president of the Foundation for the Future.

"Hood's discoveries have permanently changed the course of biology and revolutionized understanding of genetics, life, and human health," the foundation said in a statement.

The University of Toronto has named geneticist Steve Scherer to direct the McLaughlin Centre, which was formerly known as the McLaughlin Centre for Molecular Medicine. Scherer holds the GlaxoSmithKline Canadian Institute of Health Research Chair in Genetics and Genomics at The Hospital for Sick Children and the University of Toronto.

The McLaughlin Centre will invest in research, education, training and knowledge transfer in genomic medicine. The center will be "a hub facilitating and promoting research and educational activities, including training the next generation of physicians, health care professionals, and the public in genomic medicine," Catharine Whiteside, dean of U of T's Faculty of Medicine, said in a statement.

Sujeevan Ratnashingham, who developed the Barcode of Life Data Systems informatics platform, has won the Ebbe Nielson Prize from the Global Biodiversity Information Facility in Copenhagen, Denmark. The award includes a purse of €30,000 ($38,000).

Ratnashingham is informatics director for the Biodiversity Institute of Ontario at the University of Guelph, and he is informatics lead for the International Barcode of Life (iBOL) project.

"The prize acknowledges the value of genetic data to biodiversity science and recognizes the important work that Sujeevan and his colleagues have been doing," iBOL Scientific Director Paul Hebert said in a statement.

Michael Lutz has become the founding CEO of LifeCodexx, a new diagnostic spin-off from GATC Biotech. He formerly was global general manager of Cogenics, which Beckman Coulter acquired last year, and he was CEO of Epidauros and Sunyx, and held leadership positions at Novartis Pharma and Evotec.

In addition, Wera Hofmann has joined LifeCodexx as medical director. She has been managing director of the Association of German Human Geneticists, BVDH, a trade association, and she led a diagnostic unit for BRCA testing at the Interdisciplinary Center for Hereditary Breast Cancer at the Max-Delbrück Center in Berlin.

Peter Pohl, Christof von Kalle, and Dirk Honold are all members of LifeCodexx' supervisory board. Pohl is the co-founder and CEO of parent company GATC Biotech. Von Kalle is the director of the National Center for Tumor Diseases and head of the translational oncology department at the German Cancer Research Center. Honold is a professor of financing at the Georg-Simon-Ohm University in Nürnberg, Germany.

GeneNews has elected its President and COO Gailina Liew to its board of directors, and it has re-elected six incumbent directors including Rory Riggs; Heiner Dreismann; James Howard-Tripp; Garth MacRae; Harry Glorikian; and David Sable. Wayne Marshall, Choong-Chin Liew, and Fran Tuttle did not stand for re-election to the company's the board of directors.

GeneNews also said this week that it has appointed Leslie Auld to be CFO and treasurer, and she will succeed Sonny Young, who had been appointed to the role of VP of finance and treasurer at the beginning of 2009 on an interim basis. Young will continue to work with the company as a consultant. Auld formerly was senior director of finance at Luminex Molecular Diagnostics and she was CFO of Attwell Capital.

Dyadic has appointed Anne Whitehead to be executive director of strategic alliances, Thomas O'Shaughnessy as VP of sales and marketing, Richard Jundzil as VP of operations, and Brian Murdoch to be senior director of sales and technical development.

Whitehead has 20 years of experience in the New York business and legal communities, including five years at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom; O'Shaughnessy has worked at General Electric, and at Occidental Chemical Corporation; Jundzil has been Dyadic's director of development and quality since 2008, and he worked for 10 years at Genzyme; and Murdoch was Dyadic's director of sales and marketing, and he formerly worked at Dutton Engineering and at Enzymatic Deinking Technologies.

David Traylor has joined Headwaters as a managing director within its life sciences group. Traylor previously worked at Caris & Company, where he was focused on capital formation for biopharmaceutical and device companies. He also previously led the management of programs at Affymetrix, and held senior business development positions at Atugen and BioSeek.

Promoted? Changing jobs? GenomeWeb wants to know. E-mail [email protected] to appear in People In The News, a weekly roundup of industry comings and goings.

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