Dr. Elaine Ostrander from the National Institutes of Health will be our next speaker in the Dialogues of Discovery lecture series at Janelia. In her talk, “How to Build A Dog In 2,392,715,236 Simple Steps,” Ostrander will explain how scientists have built an unprecedented dataset of dog breeds and used that data to answer longstanding questions about the canine family tree.
Ostrander’s talk is on Wednesday, September 26 at 7:00 p.m. All Dialogues of Discovery lectures are free and open to the public, but tickets are required for admission.
About the Talk
There are nearly 400 modern domestic dog breeds, each with a unique history and genetic profile. We have assembled the largest and most diverse dataset of dog breeds, reflecting their extensive phenotypic variation and heritage in order to identify breed defining loci. Combining genetic distance, introgression, and genome-wide haplotype sharing analyses, we uncover geographic patterns of development and independent origins of common traits. In addition, we have analyzed the sequence of 722 canids, generating data on 91 million variants across 161 breeds. Using that data in genome wide association studies, we have identified genetic variants associated with disease susceptibility, morphologic traits and longevity.
About Elaine Ostrander
Ostrander is a Distinguished Senior Investigator and Chief of the Cancer Genetics and Comparative Genomics Branch at the National Human Genome Research Institute of NIH. She received her PhD from Oregon Health Sciences University in 1987 and did postdoctoral training at Harvard and the University of California, Berkeley. She initiated the canine genome project in 1993. Her current work focuses on finding genes controlling morphologic variation and disease susceptibility. She was a faculty member at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center for 12 years and moved to NIH in 2004. Ostrander has published over 350 papers, edited multiple books, and won several awards including the American Cancer Society Junior Faculty Award, Burroughs Welcome Award for Functional Genomics, Asa Mays Award, the International Canine Health Lifetime Achievement Award, and the 2013 Genetics Society of America Medal.