Genetic Changes that Cause Autism Are More Diverse Than Previously Thought

Researchers find that the genetic causes of autism consist of a wide variety of genetic changes —

The types of gene mutations that contribute to autism are more diverse than previously thought, report researchers at University of California, San Diego School of Medicine in the March 24 online issue of The American Journal of Human Genetics. The findings, they say, represent a significant advance in efforts to unravel the genetic basis of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). …Read the Full Story from the UC San Diego Newsroom


Keith Vaux, MDDr. Keith Vaux, Professor of Clinical Medicine in the Division of Medical Genetics and Professor of Neurosciences, is a coauthor of the study report.

He conducts neurodevelopmental research with particular interest in rare diseases, epilepsy and autism.

Dr. Vaux did his internship and received his pediatrics residency training at the Naval Medical Center, San Diego. In his fellowship work in dysmorphology and medical genetics, Dr. Kenneth Lyons Jones was his mentor.

Dr. Vaux is Clinical Chief of Medical Genetics for UC San Diego Health.

Jill P. Mesirov Appointed Associate Vice Chancellor for Computational Health Sciences

UC San Diego School of Medicine recruits world leader in computational biology —

Leading computational biologist Jill P. Mesirov, PhD, has been appointed associate vice chancellor for computational health sciences and professor of medicine at University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and Moores Cancer Center. Mesirov most recently served as associate director and chief informatics officer at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, where she directed the Computational Biology and Bioinformatics Program. … Read the full story from the UC San Diego Newsroom


Dr. Mesirov joins the Department of Medicine as a professor in the Division of Medical Genetics.

Dr. Trey Ideker Named AAAS Fellow

Trey Ideker, PhD

Trey Ideker, PhD

Trey Ideker, PhD, professor of medicine in the Division of Medical Genetics and professor of bioengineering, is one of three UC San Diego faculty members to be named Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) this year. …Read the full story from the UC San Diego Newsroom.

 

Hannah Carter Receives NIH Early Independence Award

CTRI Helps Launch Career of Bioengineer Hannah Carter

November 22, 2013 – With support from UC San Diego’s Clinical and Translational Research Institute (CTRI), bioengineer Hannah Carter, PhD, received the highly prestigious NIH Early Independence Award and recently began began her transition to a junior faculty position at UC San Diego.

Presently she is acquiring a research team and computational resources to delve into her project: Network approaches to identify cancer drivers from high-dimensional tumor data. … Read the full story from CTRI News & Events


Hannah Carter, PhDHannah Carter, PhD, is assistant professor of medicine in the Division of Medical Genetics. Her project is Network Approaches to Identify Cancer Drivers from High-Dimensional Tumor Data.

She is now recruiting postdoctoral fellows for her project, which is funded for five years.

Carter Laboratory website

 

“Wildly Heterogeneous Genes”

New approach subtypes cancers by shared genetic effects; a step toward personalized medicine

Cancer tumors almost never share the exact same genetic mutations, a fact that has confounded scientific efforts to better categorize cancer types and develop more targeted, effective treatments.

In a paper published in the September 15 advanced online edition of Nature Methods, researchers at the University of California, San Diego propose a new approach called network-based stratification (NBS), which identifies cancer subtypes not by the singular mutations of individual patients, but by how those mutations affect shared genetic networks or systems. … Read the full story from the UCSD Newsroom


Trey Ideker, PhDLead investigator in the study is Trey Ideker, PhD, professor of medicine and bioengineering and chief of the Division of Medical Genetics in the Department of Medicine.

Postdoctoral researcher Hannah K. Carter and hematology/oncology fellow John P. Shen are the other Department of Medicine coauthors.

Citation for the study report:  Matan Hofree, John P Shen, Hannah Carter, Andrew Gross, Trey Ideker. Network-based stratification of tumor mutations. Nature Methods (2013) doi:10.1038/nmeth.2651. |  Full text (UCSD only)

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Toward a New Model of the Cell

Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Genes

Turning vast amounts of genomic data into meaningful information about the cell is the great challenge of bioinformatics, with major implications for human biology and medicine. Researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and colleagues have proposed a new method that creates a computational model of the cell from large networks of gene and protein interactions, discovering how genes and proteins connect to form higher-level cellular machinery. …Read the full story from the UCSD Newsroom


Trey Ideker, PhDThe new approach comes from the medical genetics laboratory of Trey Ideker, PhD, in the departments of bioengineering and medicine. Postdoctoral fellow Janusz Dutkowski, PhD, is lead author and Michael Kramer, PhD, a coauthor of the study report in Nature Biotechnology.

Ideker, senior author, is professor of bioengineering and medicine and chief of the Division of Medical Genetics in the Department of Medicine.

Citation for the report:  Dutkowski J, Kramer M, Surma MA, Balakrishnan R, Cherry JM, Krogan NJ, Ideker T. A gene ontology inferred from molecular networks. Nature Biotechnology (2012) doi:10.1038/nbt.2463. Published online 16 December 2012  Read the abstract

Biomarking Time

Methylome modifications offer new measure of our “biological” age

Women live longer than men. Individuals can appear or feel years younger – or older – than their chronological age. Diseases can affect our aging process. When it comes to biology, our clocks clearly tick differently.

In a new study, researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine, with colleagues elsewhere, describe markers and a model that quantify how aging occurs at the level of genes and molecules, providing not just a more precise way to determine how old someone is, but also perhaps anticipate or treat ailments and diseases that come with the passage of time. … Read the full story from the UCSD Newsroom


Trey Ideker, PhDTrey Ideker, PhD, is co-senior author of the study report. He is professor of medicine and chief of the Division of Medical Genetics, professor of bioengineering and faculty investigator in the UCSD Institute for Genomic Medicine.The overall goal of Ideker’s work is to map and model molecular networks of cellular processes in health and disease, particularly in cancer and the response to genotoxic stress.

Coauthors of the study report include Rob DeConde, a graduate student in Ideker’s laboratory.

Read the abstract of the study report in PubMed

Citation: Hannum G, Guinney J, Zhao L, Zhang L, Hughes G, Sadda S, Klotzle B, Bibikova M, Fan J-B, Gao Y, Deconde R, Chen M, Rajapakse I, Friend S, Ideker T, Zhang K: Genome-wide Methylation Profiles Reveal Quantitative Views of Human Aging Rates. Molecular cell doi:10.1016/j.molcel.2012.10.016. PMID: 23177740

Facebook Boosts Voter Turnout

In 61-million-person experiment, researchers show online social networks influence political participation, with close relationships mattering most

About one third of a million more people showed up at the ballot box in the United States in 2010 because of a single Facebook message on Election Day, estimates a new study led by the University of California, San Diego. … Read the full story from the UCSD Newsroom


Dr. James FowlerLead author of the study report is Dr. James H. Fowler, professor of medicine in the Division of Medical Genetics and professor of political science in the Division of Social Sciences.

Dr. Fowler’s research is concerned with social networks, behavioral science, evolution, politics, genetics and big data. In recent medicine-related studies, he has examined the dynamics of alcohol consumption, smoking and obesity in large social networks.

Scientists Map Changes in Genetic Networks Caused By DNA Damage

Using a new technology called “differential epistasis maps,” an international team of scientists, led by researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine, has documented for the first time how a cellular genetic network completely rewires itself in response to stress by DNA-damaging agents… Read the full story from the UCSD Newsroom


Dr. Trey Ideker

Senior author of the study is Trey Ideker, Ph.D., Professor and Chief of the Division of Medical Genetics in the Department of Medicine and Professor of Bioengineering (pictured above).  Department of Medicine faculty coauthors include Richard D. Kolodner, Ph.D., Professor in the Division of Hematology-Oncology.

Read the abstract of the article in the December 3 issue of Science.

Dr. Linda Wasserman Retires from Cancer Center

Linda Wasserman, M.D., Ph.D., Clinical Professor of Medicine in the Division of Genetics, has retired from her position at UC San Diego.

Dr. Wasserman served the Moores UCSD Cancer Center in medical genetics for many years, most recently as leader of the DNA Sequencing Shared Resource.

Dennis Carson, M.D., Director of the Cancer Center, and colleagues gathered at the Cancer Center on March 26 to honor Dr. Wasserman for her contributions.

Read the full story from the Cancer Center

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