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January 7, 2015
Society News

GSA is pleased to announce the Spring 2015 winners of GSA's DeLill Nasser Award for Professional Development in Genetics! The awards provide $1,000 travel grants for each recipient to attend any national or international meeting, conference, or laboratory course. The winners are:
  • Robert Blake Billmyre (graduate student, Duke University)
  • Justin Bosch (graduate student, University of California, Berkeley)
  • Yee Lian Chew (graduate student, University of Sydney)
  • Kevin Schoenfelder (graduate student, Duke University)
  • Collin Ewald (postdoc, Harvard Medical School)
  • Travis Johnson (postdoc, Monash University)
  • Ivan Liachko (postdoc, University of Washington)
  • Hansong Ma (postdoc, University of California, San Francisco)
Congratulations to the winners! [more...]

The latest GSA Reporter is out! Featuring a fresh new design, this issue includes articles by the GSA community on how PIs can support women in science, how to get involved in science outreach, pervasive protein translation, tips for good scientific presentations; features on important Society news and awards; and much more! Check your mailbox for a hard copy or read a PDF version online.

The early registration deadline for the 56th Annual Drosophila Research Conference is fast approaching! The conference will feature a great lineup of plenary and platform speakers as well as various career development opportunities. Register before January 16 to save over $100. Also, remember to renew your GSA membership for 2015 to take advantage of discounts for GSA members. We hope to see you March 4–8, 2015, in Chicago!

Attending the Drosophila Research Conference? Please volunteer your time and expertise for our educational events! We have opportunities for graduate students, postdocs, faculty, and other career scientists to help out. Please complete this survey to let us know whether you can help.

New for 2015, GSA is teaming up with CourseSource to host a workshop at most Society conferences: "Preparing your educational resources for online publication." The first of these will take place just before the Drosophila Research Conference in Chicago, 4-7 pm on Wednesday, March 4, 2015. The workshop will guide attendees through the submission process for both CourseSource and GSA PREP and give them a dedicated time to work on their submissions. [more...]

The GSA Journals

The mechanisms protecting the cell against formation of ectopic centromeres (neocentromeres) are poorly understood. In a recent GENETICS paper, Gonzalez et al. show that overexpression of the centromere-specific histone H3 variant CENP-A in fission yeast results in the assembly of ectopic CENP-A chromatin with features of neocentromeres. Intriguingly, this assembly is suppressed by overexpression of histone H3 or H4.

Did you know that GENETICS and G3 allow authors submitting manuscripts for review to submit simultaneously to bioRxiv with just a click of a button? The GSA Journals' partnership with Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory allows our journals to be the first (outside of CSHL's own) to feature this innovative offering encouraging the use of preprint servers. [more...]

For 2015, make a New Year's resolution that you (and your paper) will be treated well as an author, and submit to journals who do just that. How many times have you:
  • waited weeks to find out whether a journal will even send your manuscript out for review?
  • waited months for a first decision on your manuscript?
  • had an editor who was not a practicing scientist?
  • not been able to access data associated with a paper you're reading?
  • received a decision letter on your manuscript that simply says, "respond to all the reviewers' comments" with no additional guidance?
Even once is one too many times! Submit to GENETICS and G3: Genes|Genomes|Genetics and give your paper the attention it deserves.

Included in this Issue:

December Issue

December Issue


Faculty Positions, Minerva Schools at KGI

Clinical Content Quality Scientist (3690), Qiagen, Redwood City, CA

Postdoctoral Fellowship - Novel Antimicrobials, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, MA

Director of Network Activities, Genetic Alliance, Washington, DC

Geneticist, Visiting Assistant Professor, College of Wooster, Wooster, OH

Assistant/Associate Professor, University of Richmond, Department of Biology, Richmond, VA

Postdoctoral Researcher, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA

Public Outreach Manager, American Society for Microbiology, Washington, DC

Assistant Professor - Health Promotion and Genomics Research, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT

Visiting Assistant Professor, Stetson University Biology Department, DeLand, FL

Asst. or Assoc. Professor, Plant Quantitative Genetics, University of California, Riverside, Riverside, CA

Assistant Professor - Tenure Track, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT

Members in the News

GSA member Mike Snyder (Stanford University) has been awarded $7.1 million in funding from the recently launched Genomics of Gene Regulation (GGR) program of the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI). Snyder's team will study the networks of genes and pathways underpinning the development of keratinocytes.

Education and Professional Development

Does your institution have Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) funding for summer 2015? Let us know so we can spread the word to students at community colleges, undergraduate institutions, and other US institutions! Please provide information about your institution's REU program (or any similar program) by January 23, and GSA will include the news in our special-issue Education Quarterly this winter. [more...]

Naturejobs career panel
Are you having issues in the lab? How do you deal with difficulties? A Naturejobs career panel (right) discusses how to cope when things go wrong in academia.

10 Do's and Don'ts for prospective and current PhD students, including pointers on how to make the most of your PhD and common mistakes to avoid.

Funding, Fellowships, and Awards

USDA's National Institute of Food & Agriculture has announced a new institutional fellowship program with nearly $17 million available to support undergrads, predocs, and postdocs. Deadlines are in February 2015.

Last call for the National Science Foundation (NSF)'s Postdoctoral Research Fellowships in Biology, which are awarded to recent PhD recipients for research and training in selected areas. The fellowships are also designed to provide active mentoring to the Fellows by the sponsoring scientists. Applications are due January 8, 2015.

NSF's Improving Undergraduate STEM Education (IUSE) program invites proposals that address immediate challenges and opportunities facing undergraduate STEM education, as well as those that anticipate new structures and functions of the undergraduate learning and teaching enterprise. Applications are due January 15, 2015.

The AAAS Mass Media Science & Engineering Fellows Program places science, engineering, and mathematics students at media organizations nationwide. Fellows have worked as reporters, editors, researchers, and production assistants during this 10-week summer program as they research, write, and report today's headlines, sharpening their abilities to communicate complex scientific issues to the public. Applications are due January 15, 2015.


This week brings the start of the 114th Congress with Republicans holding majorities in both the House and Senate. With help from the FASEB Office of Public Affairs, we've posted the composition of key Senate committees for the GSA community. If you are a constituent of these Senators, we hope you will take advantage of the opportunity to communicate your views about the importance of federally funded research. [more...]

Jon Lorsch, director of NIH's National Institute of General Medical Sciences, has posted a new entry on the NIGMS Feedback Loop blog about the need for shared responsibility to increase the efficiency and sustainability of the biomedical research enterprise. He asks researchers to think about these questions: Can I do my work more efficiently? What size does my lab need to be? How much funding do I really need? How do I define success? What can I do to help the research enterprise thrive?

The US Patent & Trademark Office is taking another look at how it handles the patenting of inventions derived from nature.

Two of India's major science funding agencies are joining the open access push by requiring the research they fund to be published in publicly available repositories.

Confused about the new NIH biosketch format? The Rock Talk blog provides some details on its implementation.

And finally...

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Genetics takes top spots in 2014 science: among the 10 Breakthroughs of the Year chosen by Science editors, the 'People's Choice' award went to a study that expanded the DNA alphabet; among the top 10 science news stories of 2014, the #1 spot went to research showing that the Black Death left a mark on the human genome by allowing people with certain genetic backgrounds to survive. 
  • Research from 23andme reveals that a significant proportion of African-Americans, European Americans, and Latinos in the U.S. carry ancestry from outside their self-identified ethnicity.
  • Check out some beautiful biology in the 2014 winners of the Olympus Bioscapes International Digital Imaging Competition!
  • Researchers have developed a fast visual test to identify drug-resistant bacteria, which should help doctors determine quickly which antibiotics to prescribe.
  • An internet for DNA: The Global Alliance for Genomics and Health, a coalition of geneticists and computer programmers, is developing protocols to help researchers exchange genetic information across the Internet.
  • "Advances in DNA science have surely placed us in some kind of brave new world—the question is, which kind." The Point examines how genetics is influencing our science, society, and selfhood.

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: January 15, 2015. Send items (and feedback) to GSA's Communications and Engagement Manager, Raeka Aiyar, raiyar@genetics-gsa.org.