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Human Genome News Archive Edition

Human Genome News, September 1991; 3(3)

Physical Mapping, YACs Are Featured Topics at First NCHGR Grantee Workshop

On June 24 the National Center for Human Genome Research (NCHGR) held its first Grantees Workshop in Bethesda, Maryland, in conjunction with the semiannual meeting of the Program Advisory Committee on the Human Genome (PACHG). Over 125 grantees, advisors, scientists, and invited guests attended the 1-day workshop to discuss the state of physical mapping, assess progress toward the Human Genome Project's 5-year goals for physical mapping, and address future mapping directions and needs. Oral and poster presentations were given on work performed under more than 50 active physical mapping and mapping technology development grants.

After welcoming remarks by NCHGR Director James Watson and PACHG Chair Paul Berg, the morning program focused on technology development for physical mapping.

  • Maynard Olson (Washington University) gave a keynote talk on the development of current approaches to large-genome physical mapping.
  • David Patterson (Eleanor Roosevelt Institute) reported on the human chromosome 21 Joint YAC Screening Effort, which is a community-wide collaboration for central screening of the St. Louis yeast artificial chromosome (YAC) library to identify clones derived from chromosome 21.
  • David Ledbetter (Baylor College of Medicine) discussed his laboratory's work on the use of repeat-sequence polymerase chain reaction methods in human chromosome 17 physical mapping.
  • Jeanne Lawrence (University of Massachusetts) described her efforts to develop fluorescence in situ hybridization of metaphase and interphase chromosomes as a tool for mapping and genome characterization.
  • Paul Meltzer (University of Michigan) talked about using chromosome microdissection applications to establish a human chromosome 6 physical map.
  • Scott Strobel (California Institute of Technology) described his work in Peter Dervan's laboratory on site-specific enzymatic cleavage of a human chromosome mediated by triple-helix formation.

Grantees presented summaries of their work at poster sessions, where they had the opportunity to talk with other grantees and advisors. A panel composed of PACHG members and chaired by Norton Zinder (Rockefeller University) led discussions on the state of physical mapping, primarily on improvements in the resolution of in situ hybridization and other mapping studies. Additional topics were YAC technology limits, existing YAC libraries' status, and potential ways to improve the YAC system.

Grantees and advisors concluded that the workshop provided a useful forum for NCHGR-supported investigators to discuss their work and meet with others in the field. PACHG members strongly recommended that similar workshops be held annually.

Reported by Mark Guyer, Assistant Director for Program Coordination
and Joyce Rudick, Program Assistant

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Human Genome Project 1990–2003

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