Genome Science Event Commences in Capital

A MAJOR conference is kicking off in Edinburgh today (03 SEP) which will bring together scientists from all over the world to share ideas in the rapidly evolving field – with an impressive line-up of all-female keynote speakers for the very first time in the event’s history.


Genome Science 2019 will see 250 delegates from academia, healthcare and industry come together to discuss the opportunities and address the challenges of genome science and technology.


Organised this year by the Roslin Institute and Edinburgh Genomics, the annual event has grown to a fully-fledged international conference from an informal meeting first taking place in 2007 in Nottingham.


Held for the first time in the Scottish capital city, delegates will be travelling from as far as Australia for the three-day conference to explore a wide range of subjects such as disease resistance and animal conservation.


Professor Mick Watson, Personal Chair of Bioinformatics and Computational Biology with the Roslin Institute has been part of the committee organising the event.


He said: “As a frequent attendee of this conference over the years, myself and the team are thrilled to be hosting it in Edinburgh for the first time and to be welcoming four fantastic keynote speakers who will bring a wealth of insight from their own research and experiences.


“When we first started meeting in Nottingham 12 years ago it was based upon the advances made in DNA sequencing technologies – it was a revolution of sorts in biological research.


“It is a rapidly changing landscape so we find it hugely beneficial to meet up and discuss some of the opportunities and challenges we are all facing.


“Congregating in Edinburgh this year is a real sign of our city’s strength in genome research.”


After an informal welcome reception, the forum will take place until Wednesday at Edinburgh First’s John McIntyre Conference Centre, the University of Edinburgh’s year-round conference venue.


Keynote speeches will be made by Dr Sarah Teichmann from the Wellcome Sanger Institute, Professor Jane Carlton from NYU Centre for Genomics and Systems Biology, Dr Kirsten Bos from the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History and Professor Wendy Bickmore, Director of the Medical Research Council (MRC) Human Genetics Unit in Edinburgh.


The conference is part of an especially busy summer for Edinburgh First. Bringing huge economic and academic benefit to the city, in 2018 alone, Edinburgh First organised 1,648 events for more than 132,000 delegates and accommodated more than 42,000 guests across its hotels and apartments.


Claire Pryde, Head of Conference and Events, Edinburgh First, said: “Our John McIntyre Conference Centre is a perfect location for events like this and a real advert for Edinburgh, set against the backdrop of Arthur’s Seat.


“The variety of the conferences really demonstrate how versatile our facilities are – we welcome all sorts of subjects and sizes of events.”


Demonstrating its professionalism, Edinburgh First at the University of Edinburgh recently landed Commercial University of the Year at the College and University Business Officers (CUBO) awards.