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People in the News: Dec 3, 2010 (rev. 1)

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Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute has employed Joanne Luciano as research associate professor in the institute's Tetherless World Research Constellation.

In her research, Luciano uses ontologies, mathematical modeling, and computer simulations to study diseases and share medical data.

Prior to joining RPI, Luciano worked for nearly 30 years as technology consultant in hospitals, biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies. In addition, she held a joint appointment with Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital for nine years, where she served as a lecturer and research scientist using computational modeling to study human disease.

At the Mire Corporation, she developed InfluenzO, an ontology to support influenza research, surveillance, and outbreak monitoring and continues to lead this collaboration with the University of Maryland, the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, and the Canadian government.

She helped create the World Wide Web Consortium Health Care and Life Sciences special interest group which integrates the efforts of pharmaceutical and clinical researchers, doctors, and technologists to build medical web-based technology standards.

In addition, she has been involved in the development of the BioPAX standard and is a co-organizer of the BioPathways Consortium.

Luciano holds a bachelors and masters degree in computer science as well as a doctorate in cognitive and neural systems from Boston University.


A list of recent hires by Caris Life Sciences includes Wang-Juh Chen, a bioinformatician from Arizona State University.

Chen joins a team of researchers employed at the company's Phoenix, Ariz. offices that will be responsible for developing its Carisome circulating microvesicle technology, which identifies and characterizes disease-associated circulating microvesicles in blood.

The team will focus on characterizing the novel protein markers associated with the company's assays, as well as creating synthetic microvesicles.

The Scan

Study Finds Few FDA Post-Market Regulatory Actions Backed by Research, Public Assessments

A Yale University-led team examines in The BMJ safety signals from the US FDA Adverse Event Reporting System and whether they led to regulatory action.

Duke University Team Develops Programmable RNA Tool for Cell Editing

Researchers have developed an RNA-based editing tool that can target specific cells, as they describe in Nature.

Novel Gene Editing Approach for Treating Cystic Fibrosis

Researchers in Science Advances report on their development of a non-nuclease-based gene editing approach they hope to apply to treat cystic fibrosis.

Study Tracks Responses in Patients Pursuing Polygenic Risk Score Profiling

Using interviews, researchers in the European Journal of Human Genetics qualitatively assess individuals' motivations for, and experiences with, direct-to-consumer polygenic risk score testing.