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Genome Sciences Institute

Genome Sciences Institute

Fostering excellence and interdisciplinary collaborations in research and training in the Genome Sciences.

Penn State University, The Genome Sciences Institute at the Huck - Pushing the Frontier

Understanding the function and evolution of genomes, how they interact with each other and the environment and the consequences for health and fitness, requires a combination of new high throughput experimental techniques and innovative approaches to handling, analysing and integrating the massive data these techniques produce. Insight and understanding in this 21st century enterprise are quintessentially interdisciplinary.

The Institute, cutting across departments and colleges at Penn State, brings together people with a range of expertise and scientific perspectives. Centers of excellence and projects within the Institute belong to four broad thematic areas:

  • Algorithms, computational tools and bioinformatics

  • Statistics and machine learning for high throughput data analysis and integration

  • Functional, evolutionary and ecological genomics

  • Translation and biomedical applications

Recent publications
In vivo observations of a fluorescent protein may spark development of novel cancer treatments Using a technique known as Bimolecular Fluorescence Complementation (BiFC), Zhi-Chun Lai and his lab have directly visualized the activation of the Hippo (Hpo) tumor-suppressor pathway in living cells.
Hepatitis C treatment's side effects can now be studied in the lab A research team led by Craig Cameron has developed a means of replicating and observing in Petri dishes and test tubes the adverse side effects of certain hepatitis C medications.
Early-Earth cells are modeled to show how the first life forms might have packaged RNA Phil Bevilacqua and his colleagues have developed a chemical model that mimics a possible step in the formation of cellular life on Earth four billion years ago.
Molecular, Cellular, and Integrative Biosciences Ph.D. candidate Marta Byrska-Bishop and faculty researcher Dr. Ross Hardison study genomics and gene regulation in relation to inherited diseases. Video profile: Marta Byrska-Bishop & Ross Hardison - Full article
Neurobiologist Tim Jegla and his Lab find in a living, ancient sea anemone species the same gene family and ion channel that regulate the slow wave contractions of the human heart. Human heart beats using nearly billion-year-old molecular mechanism - Full article
The Rolls Lab discovers a new neuron repair pathway that could one day help people suffering from nerve damage. Existence of new neuron repair pathway discovered - Full article