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Vol. LXIV, No. 21
October 12, 2012

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Spectrum of Science Offered at Stetten Symposium, Oct. 17
Dr. Carlos Bustamante Dr. Kathy M. Giacomini Dr. Tim Mitchison
DeWitt Stetten, Jr., Symposium speakers (from l) Dr. Carlos Bustamante, Stanford University School of Medicine; Dr. Kathy M. Giacomini, University of California, San Francisco; and Dr. Tim Mitchison, Harvard Medical School

Scouring the genomes of diverse populations for clues about disease susceptibility. Studying gene variations to understand individual drug responses. Focusing on small-molecule inhibitors of cell division for anti-cancer drug leads.

This range of research will be featured in an afternoon of science at the DeWitt Stetten, Jr., Symposium. The event, which commemorates NIGMS’s 50th anniversary, will be held on Wednesday, Oct. 17, from 1 to 4 p.m. in the Ruth L. Kirschstein Auditorium of the Natcher Conference Center.

Following an introduction by NIGMS acting director Dr. Judith Greenberg, NIH director Dr. Francis Collins will offer his “Reflections on NIGMS at 50.” The symposium will continue with three scientists who reflect the breadth of the NIGMS basic research and training mission.

First, Dr. Carlos Bustamante will focus on “Population Genetics in the Personal Genome Era: Genomics for the World.” A professor of genetics at Stanford University School of Medicine, he uses innovative mathematical approaches to analyze population history and genomic data from ethnically and racially diverse groups. He seeks to understand how rare genetic variants and population admixture affect complex traits such as disease susceptibility.

Next, University of California, San Francisco, pharmaceutical scientist and professor Dr. Kathy Giacomini will discuss her research on membrane transporter genomics and the role of these proteins in drug targeting, disposition and response. A major focus of her work is identifying variation in transporter genes and understanding how those differences can alter drug response. Her talk is titled “Shifting Paradigms for Pharmacologic Research.”

The concluding speaker is Dr. Tim Mitchison, who will discuss “Microtubules: From Basic Biology to Cancer Drugs and Back Again.” A professor of systems biology at Harvard Medical School, he is a pioneer in the study of cell division who is known for the paradigm-shifting concept of “dynamic instability” in microtubules and subsequent discoveries that had a profound impact on the understanding of cellular function.

Following these talks, a poster session in the upper-level atrium will showcase work originally presented by undergraduate, graduate, postdoctoral and earlycareer scientists at a number of scientific meetings, where NIGMS staff selected them for special recognition.

Registration is not required for this event. It will also be videocast at http://videocast.

For more information on the symposium, see Stetten_2012.htm. For reasonable accommodation, contact Jilliene Mitchell at or (301) 496-7301.—Chelsea Toledo

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