The Next Generation

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Deborah Nickerson, arguably one of the leading forces of SNP research, did not start her scientific path with genetics in her sights. Her career officially kicked off after winning a predoctoral fellowship courtesy of the National Cancer Institute in 1974; four years later, she graduated from the University of Tennessee with a PhD in immunology. But we can thank Kary Mullis for capturing Nickerson's interest — enough to change her career path to genetic research. While on sabbatical, Nickerson stumbled upon PCR, at the time a game-changing new technology.

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