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Genome Tri-Conference Expects 25 Percent Attendance Growth, HGP is Main Draw

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AN FRANCISCO--With more than 1,500 registrants, the Genome Tri-Conference 2000 to be held here February 26-March 3, will draw at least 25 percent more attendees than it did last year, according to conference organizer Cambridge Healthtech International of Newton, Mass.

The three conferences within a conference are slated to begin with a partnering meeting featuring presentations from emerging and early-stage companies looking to form collaborations. A second gathering midweek will concentrate on the Human Genome Project with an emphasis on tools and methods used in sequence analysis to identify novel targets for diagnostic and therapeutic applications. Completing the trio will be two days spent scrutinizing gene function analysis. More than 100 presentations and 60 exhibitors, workshops, and demonstration suites will be featured throughout the week.

One afternoon of the partnering meeting will be devoted to bioinformatics. Executives from AlgoNomics, Congenomics, Cybergenetics, Entelos, Inpharmatica, Integrated Genomics, MegaMetrics, Molecular Mining, and Silicon Genetics will lecture on topics including predictive biology, multidimensional cross-genome analysis, datamining, and deduction of functional information from gene expression experiments. Other talks will cover three areas: single-nucleotide polymorphisms and gene expression; proteomics, protein structure, and function; and genetics, gene function, and target identification.

Attention will then turn to the meeting’s most popular topic: the commercial implications of the Human Genome Project. The section has about 700 advance registrants. George Poste, SmithKline Beecham’s recently retired chief science and technology officer, will give a keynote address on integration of information needs. Charles Cantor, chief scientific officer of Sequenom, will give an overview of the human genome sequencing effort, and other talks will explore genome analysis technologies such as high-throughput screening, pyrosequencing, mass spectrometry, microarrays, and microbead-based technologies.

David Botstein, chairman of the Genetics Department at Stanford University, will give another keynote talk on genomewide patterns of gene expression in cancer, followed by presentations on the Cancer Genome Anatomy Project, pharmacogenomics and SNPs, high-throughput protein analysis, and case studies of genomic-based drug development efforts.

The gene functional analysis conference will cover tools that are being used to study global patterns of gene expression and how some of that information can be used to identify targets for drug development. Genome analysis, expression response profiling, new approaches to target identification, and system approaches to cellular networks will be covered. Roger Brent, vice-president of the Molecular Sciences Institute, will deliver a keynote on combining genomic and other data in a systems approach to cellular regulatory networks.

--Matthew Dougherty

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