#30 Women In Genetics

10 women who made major contributions to the fields of microbiology and genetics are recognized. Rosalind Franklin provided key evidence for the structure of DNA. Nettie Stevens supported her hypothesis that a fetus’s sex was determined by chromosomes, not environment. Barbara McClintock discovered mobile genetic elements. Salome GluecksohnWaelsch founded the field of developmental genetics. Esther Lederberg discovered the lambda phage, worked on the F fertility factor, and, developed the method of replica plating. One theme throughout this episode is how little credit these women recieved for their work.

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#29 Precision Medicine Initiative and 21st Century Cures Ac


A review of a Precision Medicine Initiative presentation at Jackson Laboratory Genomic Medicine in Farmington, CT. by Dr. Jo Handelsman. Also on July 10th the 21st Century Cures Act passed in the House of Representatives, the advantages and disadvantages are explored if this is passed in the Senate. 

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#28 Interview with Maddie's Herd

Maddie Shaw is an active advocate with the Immune Deficiency Foundation and has a Primary Immune Deficiency Disorder (PI). She is also the Founder & Leader of Maddie’s Herd.  Maddie's Herd raises awareness and research funds ($22,000 so far of her $50,000 goal!) for the ImmunoDeficiency Foundation (IDF) as 1000s of Americans are battling immunodeficiency disorders through prolonged diagnosis. Maddie is teaching doctors to "Think Zebra" when they hear hoofs.

Like Maddie's Herd on Facebook to stay up to date. Don't forget to get your very own Maddie's Herd T-shirt and bracelet, both of which Ed Sheeran owns, he even wore his bracelet while playing on stage! 


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#27 Interview with Dr. Jonathan Klassen

Dr. Klassen shares his research with fungus-growing ant symbiosis to understand how microbial interaction evolves. He explains how relevant genetics is in his research as well as other research he has done involving gene fragmentation, phylogenetic analysis and drafting genome sequences. We discuss how genome sequencing works and how the technology has advanced in the last 10 years. The device we refer to in the episode is seen below! He explains what students can expect in his spring 2015 Microbial Genomics course (MCB 3895-004). 









Dr. Klassen is an Assistant Professor at UCONN. He received his PhD in Microbiology and Biotechnology, University of Alberta and his Postdoctoral Study in the Department of Bacteriology, University of Wisconsin-Madison. He has his own lab in UCONN Storrs campus, Klassen Laboratory. Learn more on jonathanklassenlab.com and follow their activities on Twitter @KlassenLab.

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#26 Infectious Diseases Presentation

2 recent events at UCONN are recapped:
Plugging Away at Leaks in the Public Health Dike: Infectious Disease - Ebola and the Rest. 
This event was sponsored by the UCONN Student Chapter of the American Society for Microbiology and featured 2 speakers.
Dr. Richard Melchreit is the Healthcare Associated Infections Program Coordinator at the CT Department of Public Health. He discussed the hosts of infectious disease challenges facing public health today. He discussed the concerns and pandemic influenza, outbreaks for foodborne disease; healthcare associated infections; and antimicrobial-resistant pathogens (such as MRSA, drug-resistant TB and CRE)
Dr. Randal Nelson, DVM, CT State Public Health Veterinarian expanded upon Dr. Melchreit’s ideas as well as talked about zoonoses. 
Dr. Rob Knight from Pediatrics and Computer Science and Engineering of University of California presented on the Dynamics of the Human Microbiome. I share a few points he made during his presentation that shows just how powerful the microbiome in all of us.

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#25 Interview with Cancer Hereditary Experts

Georgia Hurst (@ShewithLynch), Amy Byer Shainman (@BRCAresponder), and Ellen Matloff (@MyGeneCounsel) are involved in raising awareness for Hereditary Cancer by holding the #Hcchats (@Hc_chaton Twitter. You can catch the next Tweetchat April 29th at 9pm ET with special guest Dr. Sharon Bober (@DrSharonBober), an expert in sex after Oophorectomy or Hysterectomy.

Georgia Hurst shares her and her family's experience having Lynch Syndrome and how she started her non-profit, IHaveLynchSyndrome.com. Amy Byer Shainman describes her documentary, Pink and Blue, and being a BRCA1 positive previvor. Ellen T. Matloff is the President and CEO of MyGeneCounsel and shares her insight on the importance of understanding genetic testing and genetic counseling and we all weigh in on Angelina Jolie's impact on both.

Guest Bios

Georgia Hurst is a Lynch Syndrome Advocate and was recently granted nonprofit status for IHaveLynchSyndrome.com. She has Lynch syndrome, which is an inherited disorder that increases the risk of many types of cancer, particularly cancers of the colon and rectum. She writes for her own blog, other blogs, medical journals, and Cure Today. Her mission is to educate doctors and the public around the globe about Lynch syndrome.


Amy Byer Shainman also known as The BRCA Responder - @BRCAresponder on twitter, is a Hereditary Cancer/BRCA Health Advocate and a BRCA1 positive previvor. She is also the executive producer of the upcoming documentary Pink and Blue. This is a documentary about hereditary cancer, the BRCA mutations, & male breast cancer.

Ellen T. Matloff is the President and CEO of MyGeneCounsel. My Gene Counsel is a digital health tool that will increase the effectiveness of genetic testing and precision medicine. Ellen has worked in clinical cancer genetics for more than 18 years and was one of the key plaintiffs in the Supreme Court gene patent case of 2013.

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