October 24, 2013


Society News

Save the date for TAGC: The Allied Genetics Conference, which will be held July 13–17, 2016, in Orlando, Florida!  This GSA-sponsored event will not just be one conference, but a concurrent assembly of six model organism meetings (C. elegans, ciliates, Drosophila, mouse, yeast, zebrafish) along with a new focal area in population, evolutionary, and quantitative genetics. TAGC will also feature meeting tracks on a variety of cross-cutting scientific topics, many opportunities for networking and discussion, and a robust series of education and career development sessions. Much more information to follow, but please plan to join us in 2016!

Join or renew your GSA membership for 2014 before December 1, 2013, and you will be entered in a raffle to win one of several prizes: a complimentary registration to a GSA conference in 2014 or 2015, a one-year extension to your GSA membership, a $50 gift card to Amazon.com, or a copy of GSA's Conversations in Genetics interview series with leading geneticists. New options for membership this year include a five-year regular membership option, and a joint GSA/National Postdoctoral Association postdoc membership. Submit your membership today to be eligible to win!

GSA welcomes the election of five members to its Board of Directors. The new members include a vice president—who will serve as president of the Society in 2015—a treasurer, and three directors:

  • Jasper Rine (University of California, Berkeley), who will serve as vice president in 2014 and as GSA president in 2015.  
  • Sue Jinks-Robertson (Duke University Medical School), treasurer.
  • Angelika Amon (Howard Hughes Medical Institute and Massachusetts Institute of Technology), director.
  • Lauren McIntyre (University of Florida), director.
  • Dmitri Petrov (Stanford University), director.

Additional information about each new Board member can be found here. These new officers and directors begin their tenure on January 1, 2014, and will remain on the GSA Board until December 31, 2016. 

The GSA Journals

Attending the Annual Meeting of the American Society of Human Genetics this week in Boston?  Stop by booth 649 in the exhibit hall and speak with Tracey DePellegrin Connelly (Executive Editor of GENETICS and G3), Ruth Isaacson (Assistant Managing Editor of GENETICS and G3), and Mark Johnston (Editor-in-Chief, GENETICS) about publishing in the GSA Journals.  Stop by and find out about our calls for papers and much more!



Two new resources are available at GSA PREP, the Society’s peer-reviewed educational resource portal!  Check out the flipped-classroom exercise exploring human genetic variation and race (Dasgupta and Tuttle, 2013) and the guided classroom exercise exploring evolutionary explanations of the high frequency of cystic fibrosis (Taub and Page, 2013). If you have an educational resource that you’d like to publish in GSA PREP, submit it for peer review today!

The American Institute of Biological Sciences (AIBS), an association that works closely with GSA and many other disciplinary societies to continue efforts to improve undergraduate education, is conducting a survey of individuals who are leading large-scale change efforts at the undergraduate level. If you play a leadership role in undergraduate biology education reform, we encourage you to take their online survey, which will be open until November 5, 2013.  It is part of a larger study that will allow AIBS to investigate questions related to faculty leadership for change, the academic leadership skills faculty need and want, and existing general higher education leadership programs. 

Members in the News

GSA congratulates members Danny Reinberg and Richard D. Kolodner for their election to the Institute of Medicine (IOM). Election to the IOM is considered one of the highest honors in the fields of health and medicine and is in recognition of outstanding professional achievement and commitment to service. New IOM members are elected by current active members through a selective process that recognizes individuals who have made major contributions to the advancement of the medical sciences, health care, and public health. 

Awards and Fellowships

Nominations are open for the Blavatnik Awards for Young Scientists, which recognize the country’s most promising young faculty-rank scientists and engineers in the disciplinary categories of Life Sciences, Physical Sciences & Engineering, and Chemistry.  One Blavatnik Laureate from each disciplinary category will receive $250,000 in unrestricted funds. Candidates must have been born in or after 1972. Deadline: November 22, 2013.


Last week, the US House and Senate passed a bill that extends the nation's debt ceiling and reopened the government. Included in the agreement: the government will be funded through January 15, 2014, at current levels, which include the effects of sequestration; the nation's debt limit will be extended until February 7, 2014; and many furloughed federal workers will receive back pay.  How have you, your lab, and your research been affected by the shutdown?  Email us and let us know.

NIH has reversed an earlier decision that would have postponed many peer review meetings that were scheduled during the government shutdown until 2014. In a funding notice and blog post from the Office of Extramural Research, NIH has announced that it will now work to reschedule the missed meetings so that applications can be considered at January council meetings. This change results from the concerns expressed by many in the extramural community.

The government has re-opened and now it’s more important than ever to promote public awareness of research…GSA asks you to proclaim that WE ARE RESEARCH!  Help represent face of science—it’s important for you to do something, even if you only have two minutes to spare.  Efforts can be as simple as getting your lab together to say that “We Are Research” and sending us the photo or posting it on Facebook or Twitter.

The O*NET Data Collection Program is seeking expert geneticists from GSA to provide information about the occupation. O*NET, which stands for Occupation Information Network, is sponsored by the US Department of Labor and is the nation’s most comprehensive source of occupational data.  Participating will ensure that the complexities of work in the field of genetics will be described accurately for the American public for career exploration and job analysis. O*NET considers individuals with at least one year of genetics research experience, or with at least five years of experience supervising and training geneticists, to be expert geneticists. RTI International, the O*NET data collection contractor, will contact a random sample of occupation experts by telephone and invite them to complete a set of questionnaires. Each randomly selected participant will receive $40 cash along with a framed certificate of appreciation from the US Department of Labor.  To volunteer, please email or call Traci Davis at the O*NET Operations Center at RTI International 877-233-7348 ext. 109 or tdavis@onet.rti.org.

And finally…

Recent highlights from the GSA’s social networking platforms.  Keep up with the buzz by joining us on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn:

Do you have a brief announcement to submit to GSA e-News?
E-news items include news about GSA members – new positions, book publication, awards or grants received and obits; short policy items; brief research news items and grant programs; and, award nomination announcements.

Deadline for next issue: November 1, 2013.  Send items to Beth Ruedi, eruedi@genetics-gsa.org.