Penn Medicine News Blog Archive: Genetics

Making the Summer Count

By Karen Kreeger | August 15, 2014 | Comments SUIP_Poster Session_1

Every summer, the news is filled with profiles of summer student programs, and those that are aimed at increased participation by minority students in STEM are no exception. The Summer Undergraduate Internship Program at Penn Medicine is one such program. Read more

A Picture Really is Worth 1000 Words

By Karen Kreeger | August 1, 2014 | Comments Talamas winning image 2014

The winners of the Penn Medicine 2014 “Art in Science" can certainly make pretty pictures with fancy microscopes, but there is also a rich story of scientific inquiry behind each. Read more

Exploring the Human Microbiome

By John Shea | July 2, 2014 | Comments PENN-Med_SPRING_2014_F3b_LR-1

Like many people, I have gone through life without paying much attention to my gut –- except, that is, for the times my stomach gave unmistakable indications that it was upset. Most of the time, what was happening inside said stomach remained unknown. On the whole, it was out of... Read more

2014 Philadelphia Science Festival Recap

By Karen Kreeger | May 20, 2014 | Comments

It’s only been a little over two weeks since the end of the 2014 Philadelphia Science Festival, but the inspiration, as well as love and knowledge of science that Penn Medicine faculty, staff, and students shared with members of the public, will last far into the next year.

Cycling for Rare Diseases

By Karen Kreeger | May 1, 2014 | Comments image from http://s3.amazonaws.com/hires.aviary.com/k/mr6i2hifk4wxt1dp/14061615/ea083ced-d221-4295-800d-0e745dcaf7ba.png

The first annual Million Dollar Bike Ride is finally here. On Saturday, May 3, 2014, close to 500 riders and many other volunteers and family members will gather at Highline Park on Penn’s campus to raise funds for and awareness about rare diseases. Read more

Using the Penn High Performance Computing Cluster to Unravel the Spider’s Web

By Karen Kreeger | April 15, 2014 | Comments Golden Silk Orb Weaver L Church Flickr Creative Commons

Uncovering the genomic architecture of spider silk genes wasn’t top of mind for Benjamin Voight, PhD, when he first came to Penn a few years ago. But he and postdoctoral researcher Paul Babb are now deep into sequencing the whole genomes of two spider species: a Golden Silk Orb Weaver and Darwin's Bark Spider. Read more

Penn Medicine at the 2014 Philadelphia Science Festival

By Karen Kreeger | April 4, 2014 | Comments PSF 2011 Carnival Dry ice

PSF 2011 Carnival Dry icePenn Medicine will again play a starring role in the 4th annual Philadelphia Science Festival, a citywide collaboration showcasing science and technology every spring. Read more

Twenty Years Later: How Breast Cancer Risk Genes are Changing Patient Care

By Katie Delach | April 1, 2014 | Comments image from http://hires.aviary.com/k/mr6i2hifk4wxt1dp/14040116/c3cea997-611f-46a2-b57c-3346cde4ae63.png

In the mid-1990s, scientists for the first time were able to isolate and clone the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes, mutations in which were thought to increase susceptibility to early onset breast and ovarian cancers. A new Perspective published last week in Science takes a look back at the last twenty... Read more

Beyond the Ivory Tower: Penn’s Neuroscience Grad Students Reach Out During Brain Week, and Beyond

By Karen Kreeger | March 18, 2014 | Comments NGG KidsJudge 2013 Synpatic Land

Philadelphia is a cerebral city this spring. To start, every March, Brain Awareness Week brings together institutions worldwide to celebrate the brain. Read more

The Med Days of Summer

By Karen Kreeger | August 22, 2013 | Comments PARS 1

On the Penn Med campus, mid-August marks the start of the end for many undergrads and high-school students who are wrapping up lab experiments and making presentations about their work in an array of programs designed to showcase what research is all about. Read more

Angelina Jolie’s Cancer Prevention Surgery Puts Basser Research Center for BRCA In National Spotlight

By Holly Auer | May 15, 2013 | Comments Basser.graphic.blue.background.expanded

Basser.graphic.blue.background.expanded This week, when Oscar-winning actress and humanitarian Angelina Jolie revealed that she underwent surgery to remove her breasts after learning that she carries one of the BRCA gene mutations that put her at high risk of developing breast and ovarian cancer, the news hit home here at the University of Pennsylvania. Just a year ago, Penn announced the creation of the Basser Research Center for BRCA, which was made possible by a $25 million gift from Penn alums Mindy and Jon Gray, in honor of Mindy Gray’s sister, Faith Basser, who died of ovarian cancer at age 44. As the only center in the United States devoted solely to research on prevention and treatment for cancers related to BRCA mutations, Jolie’s story turned a spotlight on the important work in progress there, and the experiences of the many other families with similar cancer risks. Read more

2013 Philadelphia Science Festival Recap

By Karen Kreeger | May 14, 2013 | Comments PSF 2013 Carnival Penn tent village 1

Penn Medicine faculty, staff, and students shared their love and knowledge of biomedical science with families, students, and the general public at a dozen events during the 2013 Philadelphia Science Festival.

Celebrating the Work of Medical Laboratory Professionals

By Karen Kreeger | April 30, 2013 | Comments Lab Week 2013 Poster Winner

To show its gratitude to all laboratory professionals, the department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine celebrated Medical Laboratory Professionals Week April 22-26, with a host of activities, such as Phillies Night, in appreciation of all the hard work and dedication of the hundreds of staff and faculty members working in more than 30 different laboratories across the Penn campus. Read more

“We Found a Change In Your DNA And We Don’t Know What it Means” – Questions and Challenges in the Era of Massively Parallel Gene Sequencing

By Holly Auer | April 15, 2013 | Comments Basser image

Women who develop breast cancer while they’re young are often searching for answers about the cause for their disease or what they can do to improve their chances of being cured. While an increasing number of large genetic testing panels promise to scrutinize their DNA to uncover clues, a team of researchers from the Perelman School of Medicine and the Abramson Cancer Center has found that those powerful tests tend to produce more questions than they answer. Read more

Penn Med at the 2013 Philadelphia Science Festival

By Karen Kreeger | April 8, 2013 | Comments PSF logo 2013

Penn Medicine will play a starring role in the Philadelphia Science Festival again this year. The Festival is a citywide collaboration showcasing science and technology every April. This year it runs from April 19 - 28, 10 days to celebrate the region’s strengths in science and technology, bringing together more than 100 partners from academia to museums to restaurants. Read more

Defining the Traits of Transmitted HIV-1 to Make Better Vaccines

By Karen Kreeger | March 29, 2013 | Comments HIV Red Ribbon by Trygve.u Mar 13

Knowing the traits of HIV-1 strains capable of establishing new infections could be important for AIDS vaccine development. Read more

Penn Medicine at the Forefront of the Quest to Cure Cancer

By Holly Auer | March 27, 2013 | Comments Time cover 2

Cover image via TIME.com This week’s TIME magazine makes an eye-catching, bold proclamation. HOW TO CURE CANCER, the cover reads, with a subhead previewing the story contained inside: “Yes, it’s now possible – thanks to new cancer dream teams that are delivering better results faster.” Much of that team science... Read more

Heart Research Hits Close to Home for a New Penn Med Prof

By Karen Kreeger | February 20, 2013 | Comments Voight Ben desk shot Jan 13

 To celebrate February as American Heart Month, the News Blog is highlighting some of the latest heart-centric news and stories from all areas of Penn Medicine. “I know this sounds like a cliché, but one of the main reasons I’m interested in learning about the genetic basis of heart... Read more

Are You at Risk for Breast Cancer?

By Sally Sapega | October 10, 2012 | Comments DNA_noburst2

Genetic Counseling Can Help Identify Clues Confusion and fears surrounding breast cancer abound. While researchers have long since put some myths to rest -– such as ideas that using anti-perspirant, drinking caffeine, and wearing an underwire bra will all increase your risk -- others issues related to breast cancer risk... Read more

Reconciling ENCODE and CODIS

By Karen Kreeger | September 18, 2012 | Comments DNA image From tmkeesey httpwww.flickr.comphotoskeesey3746669149

The use of DNA in forensics is powerful yet subject to uncertainties. Jennifer Wagner, JD, PhD, a Research Associate at the Center for the Integration of Genetic Healthcare Technologies at the University of Pennsylvania (Penn CIGHT), and Sara Katsanis, MS, an Associate in Research at the Duke Institute for Genome Sciences & Policy at Duke University (Duke IGSP) conducted an exhaustive search of the literature and genome databases to put forensic markers used in the Combined DNA Index System (CODIS) into a context of current understanding of the human genome. Their findings are available in an early online issue of the Journal of Forensic Sciences. Read more

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