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Simon Mercer, Robert Strausberg, Claire Fraser, Lee Hood, Richard Groves


Gene Codes has hired Simon Mercer as director of software engineering. Mercer previously held data management positions at the UK’s Imperial Cancer Research Fund, the Human Genome Mapping Program in Berlin, and the Sanger Center. Prior to joining Gene Codes, he was director of the Canadian Bioinformatics Resource.


Robert Strausberg, director of the NCI Cancer Genomics Office, has been named VP for research at the Institute for Genomic Research, effective May 19. According to Claire Fraser, TIGR president, Strausberg “will be working with me and TIGR’s faculty to broaden our horizons and identify new and exciting areas of research, as well as to explore new technologies that will pave the way for advances in large-scale biological studies.”


Institute for Systems Biology co-founder Lee Hood has been awarded the annual $500,000 Lemelson-MIT Prize for the invention of four instruments: the automated DNA sequencer, protein sequencing and synthesis devices, and an automated DNA synthesis tool.


Richard Groves has been tapped to head TurboWorx’s new European office in Oxford, UK. Groves previously served as business development director, Europe, for Argentys, formerly Blackstone Computing. TurboWorx acquired Argentys earlier this month [BioInform 04-07-03].

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The Scan

Purnell Choppin Dies

Purnell Choppin, a virologist who led the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, has died at 91, according to the Washington Post.

Effectiveness May Decline, Data From Israel Suggests

The New York Times reports that new Israeli data suggests a decline in Pfizer-BioNTech SARS-CoV-2 vaccine effectiveness against Delta variant infection, though protection against severe disease remains high.

To See Future Risk

Slate looks into the use of polygenic risk scores in embryo screening.

PLOS Papers on Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus, Bone Marrow Smear Sequencing, More

In PLOS this week: genomic analysis of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus pseudintermedius, archived bone marrow sequencing, and more.