MEDIA ADVISORY: Ten Years After the Draft of the Human Genome Scientists Discuss Progress and Potential of the Genomic Revolution

On June 25th 2000, President Bill Clinton announced the completion of the first draft of the human genome, an event that promised to create a revolution in human medicine. A decade later, researchers at Yale University and around the world have made great advances in reaching those aspirations – as well as using genomic data to shed light on human evolution and development.

Researchers say astounding new technological advances will greatly accelerate those discoveries in the next decade.

Leading Yale researchers are available to speak to reporters about all aspects of the genomic revolution, including:

  • Richard Lifton, chairman department of genetics; Sterling Professor of Genetics, medicine and molecular biophysics and biochemistry; Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute – Lifton argues that the cost of doing genomic analysis has dropped so rapidly that doctors will soon use such information routinely in patient care. To make the point, Lifton and colleagues recently used comprehensive DNA sequencing to make a clinical diagnosis of a baby boy living thousands of miles away in Turkey.
  • Thomas Lynch, director of the Yale Cancer Center and physician-in-chief of the new Smilow Cancer Hospital at Yale-New Haven. The era of personalized medicine in cancer care is at hand and a patient’s genetic makeup is already helping doctors analyse tumors and devise individual care.
  • Matthew State, Harris Assistant Professor in the Yale Child Study Center and in the department of genetics at Yale. State’s lab has already identified a gene involved in Tourette Syndrome and is hard on the trail of others that contribute to autism.
  • Pasko Rakic, professor of neurobiology and neurology at Yale University School of Medicine. Rakic and colleagues are busy comparing genomes of different species to help identify the genes that gave rise to the human cerebral cortex – and those involved in some of the most devastating mental illnesses.
  • Frank Slack, associate professor of molecular, cellular and developmental biology. A search for the tiniest of genes led Slack and colleagues to find micro-RNAs, which in mice at least, seem to stop lung cancer in its tracks.

For these and other story ideas to commemorate the 10th Anniversary of draft of the human genome, please contact the Yale Office of Public Affairs.

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Bill Hathaway:, 203-432-1322