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Advisory - Johns Hopkins Genetics Press Briefings - 11/11/2008

Advisory - Johns Hopkins Genetics Press Briefings

American Society of Human Genetics 58th Annual Meeting Nov, 11-15, 2008, Philadelphia, PA.
Release Date: November 11, 2008

Large-Scale Linkage Study of Autism Identifies Multiple Loci
Dan Arking, Ph.D., assistant professor, McKusick-Nathans Institute of Genetic Medicine
Wednesday, Nov. 12, 2008
8 a.m. – 9 a.m.
ASHG Press Briefing Room (Room #307A, 3rd Floor, Pennsylvania Convention Center)

Autism is a childhood neuropsychiatric disorder that, despite high heritability, has largely eluded efforts to identify genetic variants underlying its cause. Using DNA chips, the research team has analyzed the genomes of more than 800 sibling pairs from families in which at least one child is diagnosed with autism and a second child is classified as autism, broad spectrum, or Not Quite Autism. They will present their new findings on autism susceptibility.

Ancestry Testing: Understanding the Issues and Implications
Aravinda Chakravarti, Ph.D., professor, McKusick-Nathans Institute of Genetic Medicine, president, ASHG
Thursday, Nov. 13, 2008
1:15 p.m. – 2:15 p.m.
ASHG Press Briefing Room (Room #307A, 3rd Floor, Pennsylvania Convention Center)
Live Webcast:
http://hosted.mediasite.com/hosted4/Viewer/?peid=c4371dc6873043bbb6ebb857c0d64d2a/

This year, an estimated half-million Americans will purchase genetic ancestry tests at costs ranging from $100 to nearly $1,000 per test. Ancestry estimation can have enormous value in human genetics research, revealing patterns of past human migration and providing a background pattern of human genetic variation, but it is often imprecisely defined and identified. In addition, many individuals are interested in using genetic ancestry testing to confirm or extend their knowledge of family genealogy, but current limitations regarding the accuracy, appropriate interpretation, and opportunity for harm associated with misinterpretation of the data must be acknowledged.

Translating Genome-Wide Association Study Data: Bridging the Gap Between Scientific Discovery, Clinical Research and Health Care Practice
David Valle, M.D., professor and director, McKusick-Nathans Institute of Genetic Medicine
Thursday, Nov. 13, 2008
4:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.
ASHG Press Briefing Room (Room #307A, 3rd Floor, Pennsylvania Convention Center)
Live Webcast:
http://hosted.mediasite.com/hosted4/Viewer/?peid=4544181a99d9490887db45328f1732cb/

Genome-wide analyses have had a significant impact on advancing our understanding of the link between genes and health. The first generation of genome-wide association studies (GWAS) found more than 100 genetic loci associated with a variety of common diseases, and many more such studies are ongoing or in the design phase. Researchers now are challenged with how to move from GWAS that detect genes associated with common human diseases to methods that will allow researchers to translate these results into safe and effective clinical treatments that will benefit patients.

On the Web:
McKusick-Nathans Institute of Genetic Medicine at Johns Hopkins
http://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/geneticmedicine/index.html

For the Media

Media Contacts:

Audrey Huang; 410-614-5105; audrey@jhmi.edu

Maryalice Yakutchik; 443-287-2251; myakutc1@jhmi.edu

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