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Scientific Advisory Board


The Scientific Advisory Board will comprise distinguished experts in the fields of applied genomics and diagnostics. It will receive all scientific reports and provide advice and guidance as required to the coordinator and to the steering committee, attending at least one meeting of the steering committee each year, as well as on an informal basis. Potential nominations for the SAB will be submitted to the EU project officer for approval.

Key Members
Wilhelm Ansorge

Professor Wilhelm J. Ansorge EPFL, (ETH Lausanne).

Short description of background

Magnetic properties of materials at cryogenic temperatures. Semiconductor technology and development (Texas Instruments Inc., Dallas). Construction of Superconducting magnets, computer system control (CERN, Geneva).

Technology, Instruments and Techniques developed and commercialized by my Department at European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL, Heidelberg)

DNA Sequencing Systems

Development and construction of five generations, starting with Ultra-thin Gel Technique, to High-throughput Fluorescent multiple lasers sequencing systems. (Commercialized by LKB, Pharmacia Amersham).
The technique was used for determination of the first human Gene locus (HPRT) 60 kb sequence in 1992, proving feasibility of the technology for analysis of complex genome projects. Furthermore were sequenced human chromosomal DNA for clinical projects. We participated in sequencing of yeast (largest contribution in continental Europe), genomic and mitochondrial DNA in Arabidopsis, parts of Drosophila and Anopheles. First analysis of gene expression in yeast on low carbon diet by SAGE technique.
Already in 1991 I submitted one of the first patent applications for a DNA sequencing system without gels, fluorescent "Sequencing by Synthesis", similar to those used today in US, in so called Next-generation systems.

Other contributions include

Ultrathin Gel Technique for DNA and protein analysis, DNA Synthesiser, Protein Synthesiser, Automated Microinjection in single cells(Zeiss, Eppendorf), Electro-Transfection(Eppendorf), Mass Spectrometry from Gel+Fingerprint, Nano-electrospray Mass Specs, 1st Whole Genome Chip(52000cDNAs) in 2001, Development of software, robotics and automation.

Member of EMBO, HUGO, HUPO. Honorary degree from the Charles University in Prague, 1992). Over 300 publications, Reviews, 3 books (Techniques, Molecular Diagnostics), over 30 patent applications. Involved in Technology Transfer, founder of one Biotech company. At present at EPFL, continued interest in innovative DNA analysis and other genomics tools, and serving on several European Scientific Advisory Boards.

Stephan Beck

Professor Stephan Beck is Professor of Medical Genomics at the University College London (UCL) Cancer Institute. Using experimental and computational approaches, his laboratory has broad interests in the genomics and epigenomics of phenotypic plasticity in health and disease. He received his PhD in 1985 from the University of Konstanz where he studied DNA structure. After appointments at the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge, Millipore Corporation in Boston and the Imperial Cancer Research Fund in London, he joined the Sanger Institute in 1996. During his tenure as Head of Human Sequencing (1998-2006), he contributed to the sequencing and analysis of the human, mouse and zebrafish genomes.

George Church

Professor George Church - Professor of Genetics, Harvard Medical School, Director of the Center for Computational Genetics. 1984 Harvard PhD included the first direct genomic sequencing method, molecular multiplexing tags, which lead to automation & software used at Genome Therapeutics Corp. for the first commercial genome sequence -- pathogen, Helicobacter in 1994. This multiplex solid-phase sequencing evolved into polonies (1999), ABI-SOLiD (2005) & open-source (2007). Innovations in homologous recombination and array-based DNA reading & writing lead to current research and new ethics/safety strategies in Personal Genomics (PGP, 23andme, Knome) & synthetic biology (Codon Devices, SynBERC, LS9).

Xiaoliang Sunney Xie

Professor Xiaoliang Sunney Xie was among the first to conduct fluorescence studies of single molecules at room temperature in early 1990s. His group has since contributed to the emergence of the now vital field of single-molecule science and its application to biology. In particular, his work has been focusing on single-molecule enzymology, protein conformational dynamics, and single-molecule dynamics in living cells. Technologically innovative, his work has yielded new information on various fundamental processes. Xie's team also has developed coherent anti-Stokes Raman scattering (CARS) microscopy, a highly sensitive imaging technique for living cells and organisms, which does not rely on fluorophores, but on vibrational contrast with molecular selectivity.