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Speaker Biographies

Anne Cambon-Thomsen: 

Anne Cambon-Thomsen, M.D., is Director of Research in CNRS (French national centre for scientific research) working in a research unit on epidemiology and public health at Inserm (National Institute for  Health and Medical Research) and University of Toulouse III Paul Sabatier, Faculty of Medicine Toulouse, France. A specialist in human immunogenetics, also holding also a degree in health ethics, she leads an interdisciplinary research team on “Genomics, biotherapies and public health,” involving human and social sciences as well as health sciences and the “Genetics and Society” platform of the Toulouse-Midi-Pyrénées Genopole. She is involved in several EU projects in genomic sciences, public health genomics and biobanks, where she leads the work on ethical, legal and social issues. She leads the BRIF (Bioresource Research Impact Factor) international initiative, sits on several scientific advisory boards of national and international projects and is a member of the board of the French Rare Diseases Foundation. Former member of the CCNE (French national advisory bioethics committee) and of the European Group on Ethics in Science and New Technologies (EGE), past Chair of the Operational Committee for Ethics in Life Sciences in CNRS, she is a member of the ethics and policy committee of the International Cancer Genome Consortium (ICGC) and of the deontology and ethics committee of the National Cancer Institute in France. She worked in recent years on societal aspects of biobanks, biotherapies, genetic testing and biotechnologies. ;   


Ángel Carracedo: 

In a first step of his career, AC was mainly devoted to population and forensic genetics, becoming an outstanding forensic geneticist, pioneering the use of new technologies in forensic identification and creating a center where visiting scientists from all over the world are trained. His group leads scientific production in the SCI area of legal and forensic science worldwide ( Director of the Institute of Legal Medicine (USC) from 1995, from 2002 he has also been working in the clinical genetics area, where he has set up the Galician Foundation of Genomic Medicine. This center is carrying out most of the molecular genetics and cytogenetic analysis requested by the Galician system of Health, covering a population of 3.5 million inhabitants and being one of the most important public genetic services in Spain (with more than 25000 cases diagnosed per year, including Mendelian traits, cancer  genomics, prenatal diagnosis and pharmacogenomics). With other colleagues from Barcelona and Madrid, AC has implemented the Spanish National Genotyping Center (2002), serving as the coordinator of this center under the umbrella of the ISCIII. The research activity of his group is integrated into the Spanish Network Center for Rare Diseases (CIBERER). Most of AC’s recent research is now mainly concentrated in the genetics of Mendelian and complex traits (particularly on sudden cardiac death, colorectal and breast cancer, psychiatric diseases and pharmacogenomics). AC has published 10 books and over 450 papers in SCI journals, the majority in clinical and molecular genetics(Nature, Nature Genetics, Science, PNAS, Oncogene, Human Mutation and Human Molecular Genetics), biochemical separation methods (Electrophoresis, Biotechniques, Clinical Chemistry), human population genetics (American Journal of Human Genetics, Gene, European Journal of Human Genetics, American Journal of Physical Anthropology, Human Heredity) and specially forensic science (Forensic Science International: Genetics, International Journal of Legal Medicine. He is regularly invited to be a keynote speaker at meetings, workshops and symposia in virtually all European and North and South American countries, Japan, Australia and other nations. He has been a board member and external adviser of different national and international institutions, foundations and societies on forensic science (IALM, ISFG, MAFS), genetics, cancer and pharmacogenomics. He is a Director of 70 Ph.D.’s all with the highest qualification and 18 with University or National Awards. He is a representative of Spain in The European Medicine Agency (Pharmacogenetics Working Group) and on different regulatory boards (IRDiRC, ICRC, Forensic DNA Regulator UK). He participates in a number of national and international networks and consortia (STADNAP, RIGEMAMEF, RGBio, SNPforID, RGEPs, RECAVA, Red Nacional Bioinformática Médica, EPICOLON, RGCCR, HVP, GOGENT, CHIBCHA, LACE, EUGEI, EUROFORGEN, GEUVADIS, HELIX, among others). He coordinates the Country Node (Spain) for the Human Variome Project, is Editor of Forensic Science International: Genetics and a member of the editorial board of a number of the international and national journals on genetics, cancer and forensic science. Prizes and distinctions include the Jaime I Award, Adelaide Medal, Galien Medal, Medal Castelao, Medal of Galicia, Medal to the Police Merit, Galician Prize of Research, Fernandez Latorre Award and various prizes from foundations and scientific societies. He holds a Doctor Honoris Causa from different universities in Europe and the Americas.  


Carsten Daub: 

Directly after finishing high school in 1991, Carsten Daub started studying Chemistry at the Technical University of Berlin. Until his undergraduate degree in Chemistry in 2000, he worked as programmer in the Chemistry Information Centre in Berlin from 1995 to 1999. Carsten also ran his own company from 1994 to 2003, giving system administration consulting to small businesses. In 2004, he received his Ph.D. in Bioinformatics from the Max-Planck-Institute of Molecular Plant Physiology in collaboration with the University of Potsdam, working on methods development to analyze microarray gene expression data and metabolomics data, first separately and then in an integrated approach. Directly after his Ph.D., Carsten took a postdoc position with Erik Sonnhammer at Karolinska Institutet for two years, working on protein function prediction. He then went to the Genome Exploration Research Group (GERG) of Yoshihide Hayashizaki at RIKEN in April 2006, joining the recently started FANTOM 4 project. At that moment, the Bioinformaticians in the GERG were loosely organized and Carsten set up the first team structure when he became the Team Leader of the Bioinformatics Team in April 2007. With the start of the Omics Science Center (OSC) in April 2008, Carsten continued his position as the Facility Director of the LSA Bioinformatics Core Facility. In April 2012, Carsten joined Karolinska Institutet as group leader and Assistant Professor.

Philip Groth: 

Dr. Philip Groth has a master‘s degree in bioinformatics and a Ph.D. in computer science from the Humboldt University Berlin. After working on yield prediction in genetically modified plants for two years, he assumed a position as research scientist in the Oncology Department of Bayer HealthCare Pharmaceuticals in Berlin. His first task was to collect and integrate the global cell stock information for over 500 cell lines ranging from cultivation media and number of available vials to full genomic profiles of in-house cell lines. He then established the company-wide first elastic cloud computing environment as an infrastructure for storing and analyzing large-scale genomic data from these cell lines. He recently assumed a position as IT Business Partner for Genomics within Bayer HealthCare. He lives in Berlin, Germany with his wife and two children and in his spare time enjoys sailing and horseback riding.

Heidi Carmen Howard: 

Dr. Heidi Carmen Howard is an assistant professor in Biomedical Ethics at Radboud University Medical Centre in Nijmegen, the Netherlands. She received her undergraduate and doctoral degrees in Biology from McGill University (Montréal, Canada) where she worked in the laboratory of Dr. Guy Rouleau. The focus of her Ph.D. was neurogenetics and it culminated in the cloning of the gene for Andermann Syndrome (ACCPN), a rare neuropathy primarily present in the founder population of Québec. She continued her genetics training in psychiatric genetics at the Centre for Genomic Regulation with Dr. Xavier Estivill (Barcelona, Spain) and at the Douglas Hospital with Drs. Ridha Joober and Howard Steiger (Montreal, Canada). With an Erasmus Mundus fellowship, she completed the Erasmus Mundus Master of Bioethics programme in 2008 and since then, with the support of the European Commission FP7 Marie Curie Career Development Awards (2009-2011, 2011-2013) she has been working on the ethical, legal and social issues (ELSI) related to genetics and genomics as well as biobanking. In this time, she has had the chance to work with mentors such as Prof. Herman Nys, and Prof. Pascal Borry (KU Leuven, Belgium) and Dr. Anne Cambon-Thomsen (Inserm, Toulouse, France). Her main areas of research are the ethical, legal and social aspects of direct-to-consumer genetic testing, public health genomics, genomic medicine, participant-centric research initiatives and the translation of genomics from the laboratory to the clinic. Dr. Howard is also an invited scholar at the Centre of Genomics and Policy at McGill University (Montréal, Canada) and a member of the Public and Professional Policy Committee of the European Society of Human Genetics.

Paolo Missier: 

Dr. Paolo Missier is a Lecturer in Information and Knowledge Management with the School of Computing Science, Newcastle University, U.K. His core expertise is in Information Management, with a current focus on data-intensive workflow technology for scientific applications (e.g., Taverna, e-Science Central). He currently leads a pilot project, funded by NIHR U.K., on large-scale cloud-based management of 2nd-Gen whole-exome sequencing analysis pipelines. His complementary research interest is in data provenance. Between 2011 and 2013, he has been an active member of the W3C Working Group on Provenance on the Web, which produced the PROV data model for provenance. Paolo holds a Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Manchester, U.K. (2007), MSc in Computer Science from University of Houston, Texas, USA (1993) and a BSc and MSc in Computer Science from Universita' di Udine, Italy (1990).

 Carla Oliveira: 

Carla Oliveira is an International Expert in E-cadherin-related diseases, namely hereditary diffuse gastric cancer (HDGC), and belongs to the International Gastric Cancer Linkage Consortium. Her work allowed disclosing of molecular and clinical aspects of worldwide series of families and sporadic gastric cancer cases, finding novel germline CDH1 genetic defects, defining somatic events with impact for patient management and therapy, and reporting of an association between germline CDH1 mutations and developmental malformations. Recently, Carla Oliveira’s team studied primary gastric cancers and metastases and disclosed causes of E-cadherin impairment and their impact on patient prognosis and therapy. The Expression Regulation in Cancer Group, headed by Carla Oliveira, is taking advantage of a well-established tumor bank, bioinformatics expertise and private in vitro models mimicking Epithelial/Mesenchymal/Epithelial (EMT/MET), to address the following research objectives: 1) systematically characterize and validate gastric cancer-associated genetic and epigenetic signatures using genome and transcriptome profiling; 2) identify mechanisms controlling the E-cadherin dosage needed to initiate gastric cancer and promote cancer dissemination and metastases. Carla Oliveira’s group expects to shed light onto the regulation of gastric cancer-associated genes important for initiation and progression, and find targets for clinical intervention.

Dimitrios Roukos: 

Dr. Dimitrios Roukos is Professor of Medicine and Founding Director of the Centre for Biosystems & Genomic Network Medicine at Ioannina University Greece. After long-term experience with a traditional reductionist approach, he has moved from a linear to molecular network approach with emphasis on cancer since 2007. Bibliometrics include >200 papers with 6600 citations and h=60. He is an evaluator in large-scale innovative research projects (E.U.-FP7-Health innovation, Italy Ministry of Research & Universities, France) and an editorial board member in >20 scientific journals.  


Alejandro Sifrim: 

Alejandro Sifrim was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He finished his master’s degree in Biochemistry and Biotechnology magna cum laude at the University of Leuven in 2009. He is currently finishing his doctoral degree at the University of Leuven under the supervision of Yves Moreau in the field of computational genomics, more particularly in the interpretation of SNVs in clinical genetics through genomic data fusion. He has received several awards for his presentations tending to broad audiences such as the Belgian Society of Human Genetics and the Benelux Bioinformatics Conference.

Andrew Stubbs: 

Andrew heads a translational bioinformatics team to develop applications directed to solving clinically relevant problems in cancer, cardiovascular disease and clinical genetics. He is responsible for implementing Huvariome (, a web server resource of whole-genome next-generation sequencing allelic frequencies to aid in pathological candidate gene selection. To support  somatic mutation analysis his team developed iFUSE (, a web-based fusion gene explorer. He is currently developing an integrated biomarker panel to improve the prediction of outcome in cardiovascular disease as part of the Center for Translational and Molecular Medicine ( research programme.

Zoltan Szallasi:  

Zoltan Szallasi, M.D., is a senior research scientist Children‘s Hospital Informatics Program, Harvard Medical School and a professor at the Department of Systems Biology at the Danish Technical University. He has been active in both the theoretical and experimental aspects of genetic network analysis of cancer. His lab conducted cDNA microarray-based large-scale gene expression measurements in breast cancer and developed experimental and computational analytical tools in order to achieve a more complex understanding of this disease. He has published over 50 papers in molecular biology and bioinformatics. Dr. Szallasi has also been in the forefront of discussing the theoretical limitations of exploiting massively parallel biological measurements. He holds several patents in molecular pharmacology and bioinformatics.  





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