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People in the News: Wu-chun Feng, Hugh Rienhoff, Charles Abdalian, Adam Rosenberg, and others

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Todd Johnson, Accelrys' executive vice president of marketing, corporate development, and strategy, has resigned.

Johnson joined Accelrys in 2009 as interim CEO. After the firm hired Max Carnecchia for that role, Johnson stepped into the role of senior VP and then executive VP of sales and marketing services.


Wu-chun Feng, an associate professor of computer science in Virginia Tech's college of engineering, has received one of two five-year Turner fellowships from the institution.

The Turner fellowships were established in 2011 with a $1 million gift from a VT engineering alumnus.

Feng was one of two VT researchers to win an award from the Nvidia Foundation to create a genome analysis platform that will make it easier for researchers to identify cancer mutations as part of Nvidia's "Compute the Cure" program (BI 4/29/2011). He has also been involved in efforts to optimize several genomic sequence search tools, including mpiBlast and the Smith-Waterman algorithm, for massively parallel computer architectures like IBM's Blue Gene and Cell Broadband Engine (BI 8/15/2008).

Feng earned his bachelor and master's degrees in computer engineering from Pennsylvania State University in 1988 and in 1990, respectively. He received his doctorate in computer science from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, in 1996.


Hugh Rienhoff has joined Knome's scientific advisory board.

Rienhoff is currently a managing director at Life Science Venture Partners and serves as an adjunct scientist at the Children's Hospital Oakland Research Institute. He also serves as the CEO of FerroKin BioSciences and founded the nonprofit organization MyDaughtersDNA.org, a community focused on aiding those with challenging genetic conditions.

He has served as the CEO and board chair of DNA Sciences and he was a founding director of WebMD Health.

Knome has also added three new members to its executive management team.

Charles Abdalian will serve as the company's chief financial officer; Adam Rosenberg takes on the role of senior vice president and head of corporate development; and Jay Therrien will serve as Knome's senior vice president and head of global sales.

Prior to joining the company, Abdalian served as the senior vice president of finance and CFO of Molecular Insight Pharmaceutical; and before that, he held the same posts at Coley Pharmaceutical Group, which was acquired by Pfizer in 2008. He has also served as CEO of Pelias Technologies, a venture-backed early-stage drug development company, and CFO of Emisphere Technologies, a development-stage drug delivery firm.

Abdalian holds a BS from Norwich University and an MBA from the Wharton School.

Rosenberg co-founded Clean Membranes, a startup launched to commercialize materials technology licensed from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He was also the CEO of Link Medicine, a company focused on developing disease-modifying neurodegenerative therapies.

Rosenberg holds a BA from Whittier College and a JD from University of Virginia School of Law.

Prior to joining the company, Therrien was the vice president of commercial operations and sequencing at Life Technologies where he directed sales and support activities for capillary electrophoresis, SOLiD, and Ion Torrent sequencers. He was also Illumina's director of sales for Asia Pacific and Japan.

Therrien holds a BS from University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign and a PhD from the University of Kansas.


Appistry has added Joel Saltz to its scientific and technology advisory board.

Saltz is a computer and medical scientist with experience in bioinformatics and specializes in the research, instruction, and development of computational science and data analysis technologies. He currently serves as the director of Emory University's Center for Comprehensive Informatics and is a professor and chair of biomedical informatics at the institution.

He also holds appointments in the departments of pathology, biostatistics and bioinformatics, and mathematics and computer science at Emory, as well as the position of adjunct professor of computational science and engineering at Georgia Institute of Technology. He has also held faculty positions at Yale University, the University of Maryland, Johns Hopkins University, and Ohio State University.


The Scan

Ancient Greek Army Ancestry Highlights Mercenary Role in Historical Migrations

By profiling genomic patterns in 5th century samples from in and around Himera, researchers saw diverse ancestry in Greek army representatives in the region, as they report in PNAS.

Estonian Biobank Team Digs into Results Return Strategies, Experiences

Researchers in the European Journal of Human Genetics outline a procedure developed for individual return of results for the population biobank, along with participant experiences conveyed in survey data.

Rare Recessive Disease Insights Found in Individual Genomes

Researchers predict in Genome Medicine cross-population deletions and autosomal recessive disease impacts by analyzing recurrent nonallelic homologous recombination-related deletions.

Genetic Tests Lead to Potential Prognostic Variants in Dutch Children With Dilated Cardiomyopathy

Researchers in Circulation: Genomic and Precision Medicine found that the presence of pathogenic or likely pathogenic variants was linked to increased risk of death and poorer outcomes in children with pediatric dilated cardiomyopathy.