March 13, 2013


GSA is a-twitter at #fungal2013 with the ongoing 27th Fungal Genetics Conference at Asilomar in Pacific Grove, CA.  Keep apprised of what’s going on during the meeting by following #fungal2013 on Twitter.

Today is the hotel reservation deadline for the 54th Annual Drosophila Research Conference, April 3-7, 2013 at the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel in Washington, D.C.   Make reservations online or call the hotel directly at 1-877-212-5752Advance conference registration closes Wednesday, March 20, 2013.  After that date, only onsite registration will be accepted at a higher rate.

Register today for “Federal Funding Opportunities & the Proposal Review Process,” a pre-conference GSA Career Development workshop available to attendees of the 2013 Drosophila Research Conference.  The workshop will be held from 3-5 p.m. on Wednesday, April 3 at the conference hotel in Washington.  Participants will learn about multiple federal funding opportunities through the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH).  A panel discussion with program officers will be followed by a hands-on exercise to examine program solicitations and review criteria, and to work through the mechanics of writing a good proposal.

Abstract submission and registration are now open for the 19th International C. elegans Meeting, which will be held June 26-30, 2013 at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).  Abstract submission deadline:  April 12, 2013Early meeting registration deadlineMay 22, 2013.

The GSA Journals

GSA is thrilled to announce Early Online for G3: Genes|Genomes|Genetics, GSA's open access journal. Within 7 days of acceptance, manuscripts will be published as (raw, not yet copy-edited or typeset) PDFs, along with all supplemental data, then deposited into PubMed within 48 hours. Illuminating your discoveries is part of GSA's mission. Take a peek at the latest Early Online articles.

The March issue of GENETICS includes an excellent review on long, non-coding RNAs by Kung et al.

Looking for a way to communicate research to undergraduates?  Also in the March GENETICS, the Educational Primer, “Population Genetics and a Study of Speciation Using Next-Generation Sequencing,” by Patricia Wittkopp, discusses how to use in the classroom Andrés et al. article on transcriptome divergence in closely related species of field crickets published in the February 2013 GENETICS. The Primer is the second in GENETICS’ ongoing publication of Primers, designed to help educators and students use current articles in the classroom setting.


GSA Education

GSA is now accepting submissions to GSA PREP, its Peer-Reviewed Educational resource Portal!  If you have a laboratory exercise, laboratory protocol (e.g., quick and inexpensive DNA extraction), in-class exercise, image/animation, or a course syllabus, please submit it to be part of GSA’s database of educational resources to share with colleagues. Submissions will be reviewed for completeness, accurate descriptions of their successful execution and intended audience, and core concepts and core competencies to improve the quality of genetics education.  Resources accepted into the portal will be citable, allowing the authors to list the resource on their CV.  Submit your teaching materials today! 

Reviewers wanted:  If you’d like to be a reviewer for the resources submitted to GSA PREP, please join our Education Special Interest Group.

Trainee Travel Awards

Applications are being accepted for the GSA Undergraduate Travel Award, which provides financial support to undergraduate GSA members who will be presenting their research at a GSA conference.  Students attending the 19th International C. elegans Meeting at UCLA, June 26-30, 2013 should apply now.  Application deadline:  March 29, 2013.

Graduate students, postdocs, and their mentors: DeLill Nasser Award applications are currently being accepted! This $1,000 professional development award supports travel costs to any conference or course that will take place between July 1 and December 31, 2013. For more information about the award and its criteria, visit the website and apply today! Application deadline: April 5, 2013.


Despite many thousands of calls and messages from the scientific community and others, Congress failed to pass legislation to prevent or delay the automatic, across-the-board budget cuts known as the sequester from taking effect on March 1. This means that federal agencies will see cuts of approximately five percent to their budgets for the current fiscal year. Although agencies are still working out the details of their implementation plans, the greatest impact is likely to be on new grants and contracts. NIH-supported researchers will likely also see reduced funding for non-competing continuation awards. GSA has posted NIH and NSF operating plans on its website. Please contact us at to share the impact sequestration is having on your lab, institution, or community.

Thousands of medical researchers, advocates, survivors, clinicians, business leaders, and members of the public will be descending on Washington, D.C., on April 8, 2013, for the Rally for Medical Research. This unified call to action will raise awareness about the critical need for a sustained investment in the NIH to improve health, spur scientific progress, inspire hope, and save lives. We encourage you to join the rally in person or to make the case for medical research from wherever you are!

Funding Opportunities to Enhance Training

NIH has announced three new funding programs that support its ongoing efforts to enhance scientific training and diversify the scientific workforce. Optional letters of intent for all opportunities are due on April 10, with applications due on May 10, 2013.

  • The Broadening Experiences in Scientific Training (BEST) initiative supports the development of new and innovative methods for preparing graduate students for the full breadth of research and research-related careers by higher education institutions. The BEST program will also establish a network to develop, share, evaluate, and disseminate best practices within the training community.
  • The NIH Building Infrastructure Leading to Diversity (BUILD) initiative aims to increase the diversity of the NIH-funded workforce by supporting collaborative programs that include novel approaches for enhancing undergraduate education, training, and mentorship, as well as infrastructure support and faculty development. The BUILD program is seeking applications for planning grants to help institutions develop the necessary partnerships and infrastructure needed to be competitive for the initiative.
  • NIH encourages organizations with experience in the mentorship of individuals underrepresented in the biomedical research workforce to submit planning grant applications for the NIH National Research Mentoring Network (NRMN). The NRMN will establish a nationwide consortium to provide networking and mentorship experiences for individuals from backgrounds underrepresented in biomedical research from the undergraduate to junior faculty level. Planning grant applications must propose a plan to develop the partnerships and infrastructure needed to be competitive for the NRMN initiative.  

Other Conferences of Interest

A workshop on “Compound Eyes: from Biology to Technology” is being offered March 26-28, 2013 in the historic castle of Tübingen, Germany.  The workshop will bring together students, researchers and industry representatives from neuroscience, perception, microsystems technology, applied optics, and robotics to discuss recent developments in the understanding of compound-eye imaging, the construction of artificial compound eyes, and the application of artificial compound eyes in robotics or ubiquitous computing.  For more information, visit the CURVACE website.

The Third National Conference on Genetics, Ethics & the Law will be held May 22-23, 2013, in Charlottesville, VA.  The conference is sponsored by the University of Virginia law and medical schools; GSA’s sister society, the American Society of Human Genetics; and, the National Society of Genetics Counselors.  The event is targeted at medical geneticists, genetics researchers, genetics counselors, physicians, nurses, allied healthcare providers, and medico-legal counselors and regulators. The conference will explore the legal and bioethical implications of novel genetics and genomics from American and global perspectives.  For more information and to register, see the website.

Genomics Research Europe will be held in Barcelona, Spain, October 16-17, 2013. The meeting will address the persistent challenges to genomic research technologies and public health strategies that those in the field constantly face.  For more information, visit the website.

Links of Interest from Facebook

Have you liked the GSA Facebook page?  Here’s some of what we posted in the last few weeks:

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: March 22, 2013.  Send items to Phyllis Edelman,