An Introduction to ASHG's Shared Interest Groups

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Join members of ASHG’s Membership Engagement Committee as they discuss ASHG’s Shared Interest Groups (SIGs); a place where ASHG members can collaborate with peers and discuss topics within these areas. The 3 SIGs ASHG currently offers are Bioinformatics and Computational Methods, Phenotypes & Genotypes, and Emerging Laboratory Technologies. After learning more about how ASHG members can get involved and benefit from the SIGs, each SIG will enter a breakout session to meet and discuss further.

Learning Objectives

  • An overview of ASHG’s 3 SIGs; what they are and how they work. 
  • How the SIGs are beneficial to all members and why you should participate. 
  • Best practices for engaging with your peers online. 
  • A chance to dive into SIG topics through a 30-minute guided breakout session.

Paul W. Hook, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow

Johns Hopkins University

Dr. Paul W. Hook received his Bachelor of Science degree in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from the Pennsylvania State University in 2012. He went on to earn his PhD in Human Genetics from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in 2020, where his thesis work focused on pinpointing the genes and variants underlying genome-wide association signals through the use of genomic data from disease-relevant cell populations. Dr. Hook joined Winston Timp’s lab as a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Johns Hopkins University in the summer of 2020. In this role, his work has focused on the development and application of new approaches for measuring different aspects of epigenetics by using long-read sequencing, including chromatin state, DNA methylation, and protein-DNA binding.

Minna Kaikkonen-Määttä, PhD

Professor of Cardiovascular Genomics, PI

University of Eastern Finland

Minna Kaikkonen-Määttä obtained her Bachelor's degree in Cellular Biology and Physiology from the Claude Bernard University Lyon 1, France, in 2002 and Master’s degree in Molecular Biology from University of Jyväskylä, Finland, in 2005. She obtained her PhD in Molecular Medicine under the supervision of Prof. Seppo Ylä-Herttuala in Kuopio in 2008. Her doctoral studies were focused on “Engineering Baculo- and Lentiviral Vectors for Enhanced and Targeted Gene Delivery”. She did her postdoctoral studies with Prof. Christopher Glass at University of California San Diego where she shifted her research focus into transcriptional gene regulation and enhancer RNAs supported by the Young Investigator Award from Leducq Foundation. She started her own lab in 2015 at the University of Eastern Finland with a focus on gene and cell level understanding of atherosclerosis using state-of-the-art next generation sequencing methods. Currently she is a Professor in Cardiovascular Genomics and runs a lab of 20 members while acting as a Vice Director of the A.I.Virtanen Research Institute and a Director of the Single Cell Genomics Core. She has published 95 peer-reviewed articles with ~5000 citations (H-index 32). She has received over 6 million in research funding and is currently supported by the European Research Council Starting Grant, Academy of Finland, Finnish Foundation for Cardiovascular Research and Sigrid Juselius Foundation. She is the President of the Finnish Society of Atherosclerosis and member of the board of European Vascular Biology Organisation, Scandinavian Society of Atherosclerosis, and Membership Engagement Committee of the American Society of Human Genetics. 

Augusto Rojas Martinez, MD, PhD

Senior Researcher

The Institute for Obesity Research, Tecnologico de Monterrey (Mexico)

Dr. Augusto Rojas-Martinez is a Senior Researcher and Professor at The Institute for Obesity Research at Tecnologico de Monterrey, Mexico. He is a physician with M.Sc. and D.Sc. degrees in Human Genetics and Molecular Biology. He did his postdoc in Gene and Cell Therapy at Baylor College of Medicine and was an honorary professor at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, TX. Dr. Rojas-Martinez led the first efforts of preclinical and clinical gene therapy in Mexico and Latin-America. He is certified by the Mexican Council of Genetics. Dr. Rojas-Martinez is affiliated to the Mexican System of Researchers, the National Academy of Medicine of Mexico, and the Mexican Academy of Sciences. He is past-president of the Mexican Association of Human Genetics and the Latin American Network of Human Genetics.

Douglas Dluzen, PhD (Moderator)

Doug is Director of the Professional Development and Career Office at Johns Hopkins University. He supports trainees and post-doctoral fellows as they explore their career options and identify new career-building skillsets. He received his Ph.D. in Genetics from the Pennsylvania State University, College of Medicine and completed postdoctoral training at the National Institute on Aging, where he studied the molecular basis of health disparities. In 2017, Doug was appointed Assistant Professor of Biology at Morgan State University, where he led a research program investigating the social determinants of cardiovascular health disparities in Baltimore City. Doug has a successful record of mentoring young scientists and has a long-standing interest in the professional development of trainees, having served on training committees for the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology and the American Society of Human Genetics. In addition, Doug is an accomplished science writer and editor, most recently holding the position of senior science writer and editor in the Office of Communications and Public Liaison at the National Institute of Minority Health and Health Disparities, NIH.


08/22/2023 at 12:00 PM (EDT)  |  Recorded On: 08/23/2023  |   Closed captions available
08/22/2023 at 12:00 PM (EDT)  |  Recorded On: 08/23/2023  |   Closed captions available An Introduction to ASHG's Shared Interest Groups
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