September 15, 2003
UCSC genome group is among 25 global innovators
honored by The Tech Museum of Innovation
By Tim Stephens
The Center for Biomolecular Science and Engineering (CBSE) at the University
of California, Santa Cruz, has been honored by The Tech Museum of Innovation
in San Jose as one of 25 laureates for the 2003 Tech Museum Awards:
Technology Benefiting Humanity.
|UCSC's Center for Biomolecular Science and Engineering
is led by David Haussler, right, professor of computer science and
a Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator. CBSE research scientist
Jim Kent wrote the software program used to assemble fragmented
sequence data from the Human Genome Project into intact DNA sequences
representing the human chromosomes. Kent also developed the extremely
popular UCSC Genome Browser. Photo:
The CBSE's Genome Bioinformatics Group was recognized in the Health
Award category for its crucial role in the assembly and analysis of
the human genome sequence.
On October 15 at a black tie awards gala, Silicon Valley leaders and
delegates from the United Nations will join together to honor all 25
laureates, and one finalist from each of five categories will be awarded
a $50,000 cash honorarium.
UCSC's Center for Biomolecular Science and Engineering is led by David
Haussler, professor of computer science and a Howard Hughes Medical
Institute investigator. CBSE research scientist Jim Kent wrote the software
program used to assemble fragmented sequence data from the Human Genome
Project into intact DNA sequences representing the human chromosomes.
Kent also developed the extremely popular UCSC Genome Browser, which
provides a web-based portal for scientific exploration of the human
This portal now receives about 140,000 page requests a day from scientists
in dozens of countries around the world.
Haussler, Kent, and other members of the center's Genome Bioinformatics
Group continue to develop the Genome Browser and collaborate with the
International Human Genome Sequencing Consortium on the analysis of
the human genome sequence.
"We feel highly honored to have been chosen for this award,"
"Of course, it is important to recognize that our work on the
human genome is part of a very large international collaboration that
is advancing our knowledge of the genome as a new foundation for medicine
and human biology," he added.
Knowledge of the human genome sequence will ultimately allow identification
of genes involved in many human diseases, enabling the development of
new diagnostics and treatments.
The Tech Museum Awards are designed to honor individuals, for-profit
companies, and public and not-for-profit organizations from around the
world who are applying technology to profoundly improve the human condition
in the categories of education, equality, environment, economic development,
"Reflecting the mission of The Tech Museum of Innovation, these
awards recognize the innovators who use technology to improve people's
lives," said Peter Giles, president and chief executive officer
of The Tech Museum.
The concept for The Tech Museum Awards and the five categories was
inspired in part by "The State of the Future at the Millennium"
report of The Millennium Project of the American Council for the United
Nations University, which recommends that award recognition is an effective
way to accelerate scientific breakthroughs and technological applications
to improve the human condition. The awards were inaugurated in 2001.
Judging for The Tech Museum Awards is independently conducted by Santa
Clara University's Center for Science, Technology and Society, a global
network of academic and industry experts dedicated to understanding
and influencing how science and technology impact society. They assemble
five panels of judges from around the world, recruited from research
institutions, industry, and the public sector, who judged the nominations
on five criteria.
The Tech Museum Awards represent a collaborative effort among educational
institutions and businesses. Among Silicon Valley's leaders supporting
The Tech Museum Awards are presenting sponsor, Applied Materials, Inc.,
and Santa Clara University's Center for Science, Technology and Society.
Category sponsors are the NASDAQ Stock Market, Knight Ridder, Intel,
For more information on the awards and laureates, visit the awards
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