skip to content
2007 Research Festival Artwork

Home > Opening Plenary Session

Opening Plenary Session
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
Masur Auditorium, Bldg. 10

Masur Auditorium | NIH Clinical Center, Building 10

Chromosomes in Modern Biology and Medicine
Chairs: John Niederhuber, Director, NCI, and Tom Misteli, NCI

Chromosomes are the fundamental structural units of our genomes. Since their discovery in the mid 19th century, the elucidation of chromosome biology has been the driving force behind much of modern genetics and molecular biology. The importance of chromosomes has been highlighted recently by the discovery that chromatin structure, epigenetic modifications and spatial organization of the genome are critically important for physiological processes. Defects in chromosome structure are now intimately linked to human disease, particularly cancer, and aging. The wealth of knowledge into chromosome biology gained in the last decades is now being applied for therapeutic purposes by chromosome engineering and chromosomes serve as the basis of routine cytogenetic diagnostic tests. NIH scientists have long been at the forefront of chromosome biology and have made some of the most important contributions by identifying the fundamental mechanisms involved in chromosome organization, epigenetics, and the development of novel genome sequencing, diagnostic and bioengineering tools. This session will highlight some of the cutting-edge efforts in chromosome biology within the NIH and will provide an outlook on the tremendous potential of this field for basic discovery and medicine.


Opening Remarks
John Niederhuber, Director, NCI

Genetics of Common Disease: Empowered At Last
Francis Collins, Director, NHGRI

Chromatin Boundaries
Gary Felsenfeld, NIDDK

Heterochromatin: A Versatile Platform of the Genome
Shiv Grewal, NCI

Cancer: A Disease of the Chromosome
Thomas Ried, NCI

Back to the top