August 14, 2013


GSA has two exciting job opportunities for enthusiastic, self-motivated members of the genetics community: we are seeking a forward-looking scientist to develop and implement the Society’s communications strategies as Communications and Engagement Manager; and a Journals’ Assistant Editor to work with the Editors-in-Chief (EiCs), Senior Editors and the Executive Editor of GENETICS and G3: Genes|Genomes|Genetics to fulfill our mission to identify and communicate significant discoveries and advances in genetics.  See detailed job descriptions by clicking the links above; to apply, visit the FASEB Human Resources website and upload the requested materials using the “Apply” link next to the job title. Equal Opportunity Employer.  

Honor your colleagues who have demonstrated outstanding contributions to the field of genetics, to the community of geneticists, or in genetics education by nominating them for any of five annual GSA Awards: the Thomas Hunt Morgan Medal; the Genetics Society of America Medal; the George W. Beadle Award; the Elizabeth W. Jones Award for Excellence in Education; and the Edward Novitski Prize. To help provide a diverse pool of nominees that represents excellence in our discipline, GSA especially encourages the nomination of women and deserving individuals from groups traditionally underrepresented in science.  Nominations will be accepted until September 20, 2013.

GSA invites trainee members to serve the Society as an advisory representative directly to the GSA Board of Directors or to contribute to one of the Society’s committees. Selected graduate student or postdoc applicants will be directly engaged in helping set GSA priorities and guide its activities. If you are interested in this leadership opportunity, complete the online application by August 30, 2013. In addition to answering a few questions and providing a CV, applicants will be asked for two references who can speak to your abilities related to professional and/or volunteer service. Advisory representative appointment terms are typically two years.

The GSA Journals

This month, G3: Genes|Genomes|Genetics publishes a research article “The Genomic and Transcriptomic Landscape of a HeLa Cell Line” by Landry et al., which provides a genomic resource for the most widely-used cell line in research.  Read about the resulting discussions around genomic privacy, ethics, and consent that arose following the early online publication of this article in March. An editorial by G3 Editor-in-Chief Brenda J. Andrews and GSA Journals Executive Editor Tracey DePellegrin introduces the issues and discusses the process that led to an understanding between NIH Director Francis Collins and the family of Henrietta Lacks, resulting in an agreement to provide the HeLa sequence data from Landry et al. in dbGaP. For more information, read GSA's press release. G3 also publishes three thoughtful Perspectives, written by bioethicists and scientists well-versed in the ethical, legal, and societal implications of genome sequencing and privacy, and related issues we’re facing in modern genomics. 


Included in this Issue:

August Issue

August Issue


The sister journals of the Genetics Society of America, GENETICS and G3:Genes|Genomes|Genetics, are creating a special focus/collection on the topic of sex (abbreviated sx for the purposes of this mailing) determination, among the most interesting areas of study in modern genetics.  Modern tools provide opportunities to combine genetic and molecular approaches to study such processes in model and non-model systems. This will be part of a rolling “special interest collection” of papers and reviews on the larger theme of sx, including the meiotic process and recombination, sx chromosomes, mating and incompatibility systems; the collection will have similar features to the recent Genomic Selection collection Authors are invited to submit abstracts by September 30th 2013, and complete manuscripts by November 30th 2013.  Manuscripts will be reviewed according to the usual high standards of the journals.  To provide the collection as an ongoing and growing resource for the community, we welcome continued submissions past these dates. Please submit abstracts via email with the subject heading: 'abstract sx determination'. Questions welcome!

Members in the News

Congratulations to GSA members Amanda Zacharias and John Murray of the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine for being named one of the winners in FASEB’s second annual BioArt competition! Their time-lapse of C. elegans development from single cell to hatching will help FASEB to generate interest among the public and Congress about the value—and beauty—of life sciences research. All 10 image and two video winners will be featured in an exhibit at the National Institutes of Health.

Awards and Fellowships

The deadline for applications for the Vilcek Prize for Creative Promise in Biomedical Science is TODAY, August 14. The Vilcek Foundation will award three prizes of $35,000 each to young foreign-born biomedical scientists who demonstrate outstanding early achievement. Eligible work may be in basic, applied, and/or translational biomedical science. Apply now!

Applications are being accepted for the Science & SciLifeLab Prize for Young Scientists. This prize is for PhDs who were awarded their degree in 2011 or 2012. The grand prize winner will receive $25,000; runners-up will receive $2,500–$5,000. The deadline for applications is TOMORROW, August 15.

NSF’s Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) program is accepting proposals until August 28. The REU program supports active research participation by undergraduate students; if you have an idea for a project that would give students an authentic research experience, apply for an REU and provide funding for undergraduates to become true scientists.


On July 31, the White House announced nominations to two science-related positions within the Administration. Dr. France Anne Córdova is the nominee for Director of the National Science Foundation, and Dr. Jo Handelsman is the nominee for Associate Director for Science in the Office of Science Technology and Policy. An astrophysicist, Dr. Córdova is President Emerita of Purdue University and former Chancellor of the University of California, Riverside. Dr. Handelsman is a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Professor in the Department of Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology at Yale University and has been a leader in science education in addition to microbiology. In a statement announcing the nominations, President Obama said, “The extraordinary dedication these individuals bring to their new roles will greatly serve the American people.  I am grateful they have agreed to serve in this Administration and I look forward to working with them in the months and years to come.”

From FASEB’s Washington Update: “Representative Nita Lowey (D-NY), ranking member of the House Appropriations Committee, is organizing an effort to provide members of Congress with a resource to better illustrate the negative impacts of sequestration in their districts. Lowey’s office is seeking individuals with a background in public health or health research who are willing to help field requests from Congress members for data on how sequestration is affecting local communities. If you would like to serve as a resource for this effort, please contact Jennifer Zeitzer, FASEB Director of Legislative Relations, who will put you in touch with Representative Lowey’s staff.”

And finally…

Some recent highlights from the GSA social networking platforms.  Join 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: August 23, 2013.  Send items to Beth Ruedi,