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People in the News: Jul 1, 2011 (rev. 1)


The Center for Genomic Regulation of Barcelona, Spain, has appointed Luis Serrano as its new director for an initial period of five years.

In his new role, Serrano will try to maintain the continuity of the center, as well as bring in new ideas and challenges. He also plans to attract private funding through sponsorship and partnership with companies as well as consolidating and reorganizing the institute to make it more efficient.

Serrano currently heads up the systems biology program at the CRG and has worked as a deputy director since 2007.He has also served as a group leader at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory in Heidelberg and as a Structural and Computational Biology program manager between the EMBL and Spain's National Cancer Research Center.

Serrano has a PhD in biochemistry from the Autonomous University of Madrid.

Selventa has tapped James Collins and Mathukumalli Vidyasagar as scientific advisors to provide feedback and direction to the scientific development of the company.

Collins is a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator and professor of biomedical engineering at Boston University. His research focuses on synthetic and systems biology and its applications for bacterial systems to increase antibiotic efficacy and decrease antibiotic resistance.

Vidyasagar is a professor of bioengineering at the University of Texas, Dallas. His research focuses on system and control theory and its applications. Currently he is working on problems in stochastic realization, specifically approximating high-order Markov and hidden Markov processes by lower-order processes, and the large deviation properties of such processes with potential applications to problems in computational biology and quantitative finance.

Emory University School of Medicine has tapped Joel Saltz — the director of the Emory Center for Comprehensive Informatics — to chair its newly launched biomedical informatics department.

Saltz took on the role of CCI director in July 2008. He is a professor in the pathology, biostatistics and bioinformatics, and mathematics and computer science departments at Emory as well as an adjunct professor of computational science and engineering at Georgia Tech.

Prior to joining Emory, Saltz was professor and chair of the department of biomedical informatics at Ohio State University. He has served on the faculty of Johns Hopkins Medical School, University of Maryland College Park, and Yale University.

He received his MD and a PhD in computer science from Duke University.

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