Saturday, March 3, 2012

Alphabet soup and the Pathogen Genome Project

Six months ago there was a meeting of 25 scientists in Brussels. This week there has been a meeting of 100 scientists to discuss accumulation of the various sequencing outputs into various centers. Most of these data repositories are known by a collection of initials and are part of some agency of some government somewhere.
From left:  Paul, Food Team Manager, Agilent Technologies; Eric Brown, Division Director, Microbiology, US FDA; Steve Musser, Director, Office of Regulatory Science, US FDA; Marc Allard, Microbiologist, US FDA; Bart Weimer, Professor and Director, Pathogen Genome Center; Steve Royce, Manager, Americas Food team, Suf Al-Khaldi, Research Scientist and Food Outbreak Investigator @ US-FDA, US FDA, and me.

PZ stood before the first break and announced U CA Davis is starting an initiative to collect 100,000 cultures AND genomes of pathogens over the next few years, and that these would be publicly available.  There was silence followed by a smattering of applause. Later we figured out this was the length of time for a collective "Oh #*!!  That means my 10,000 cultures I was going to build the rest of my career on have gone the way of the buggywhip" realization.

This is Big, my friends, BIG. This changes the game in place since the days of Louie Pasteur. More in another post. 

1 comment:

Unknown said...

nice pic, great to see the crew