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Genomics and Health Disparities Lecture Series

Exploring the Role of Genomics in Achieving Health Equality

Genomics and Health DisparitiesThe Genomics and Health Disparities Lecture Series was formed to enhance opportunities for dialogue about how innovations in genomics research and technology can impact health disparities. Topics will range from basic science to translational research.

The Genomics and Health Disparities Lecture Series is co-sponsored by institutes at the National Institutes of Health (National Human Genome Research Institute, National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, National Insitute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases and the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities) and the Office of Minority Health at the Food and Drug Administration.

Upcoming Lectures

November 15, 2016, 3:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Building 10, Lipsett Amphitheater

Evolution and Adaptation in Africa: Implications for Health and Disease

Sarah Tishkoff, Ph.D. Sarah Tishkoff, Ph.D.
David and Lyn Silfen University Professor
Departments of Genetics and Biology
Pearlman School of Medicine
School of Arts and Sciences
University of Pennsylvania

Sarah Tishkoff is the David and Lyn Silfen University Professor in Genetics and Biology at the University of Pennsylvania, holding appointments in the School of Medicine and the School of Arts and Sciences. Dr. Tishkoff studies genomic and phenotypic variation in ethnically diverse Africans. Her research combines field work, laboratory research, and computational methods to examine African population history and how genetic variation can affect a wide range of practical issues - for example, why humans have different susceptibility to disease, how they metabolize drugs, and how they adapt through evolution. Dr. Tishkoff is a recipient of an NIH Pioneer Award, a David and Lucile Packard Career Award, a Burroughs/Wellcome Fund Career Award and a Penn Integrates Knowledge (PIK) endowed chair. She is on the editorial boards at Genome ResearchEvolution, Medicine, and Public Health;Molecular Biology and Evolution; G3 (Genes, Genomes, and Genetics).Her research is supported by grants from the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation.

March 9, 2017, 3:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Building 10, Lipsett Amphitheater

Herman Taylor, Jr., M.D., M.P.H. Herman Taylor, Jr., M.D., M.P.H.
Director, Cardiovascular Research Institute
Professor of Medicine
Morehouse School of Medicine

Herman Taylor, Jr., M.D., M.P.H. is a nationally-recognized cardiologist leader with broad experience and success in key areas including invasive practice/research. Over the last decade he has focused predominantly on preventive cardiology and leadership of the landmark Jackson Heart Study (JHS) and ancillary observational research projects. Dr. Taylor was appointed in 1999 as the Principal Investigator and Director of the Jackson Heart Study, the largest epidemiological study of African Americans and cardiovascular disease of its kind ever undertaken.Since assuming that role he has held three simultaneous positions with the institutions funded by the NIH to administer the Study: Professor of Medicine and an attending cardiologist (and the inaugural holder of the Aaron Shirley Endowed Chair for the Study of Health Disparities) at University of Mississippi Medical Center; Visiting Professor of Biology in the Division of Natural Sciences at Tougaloo College; and, Clinical Professor of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine at Jackson State University.

June 8, 2017, 3:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Building 10, Lipsett Amphitheater

Mark Cullen, M.D. Mark Cullen, M.D.
Director, Stanford Center for Population Health Sciences
Professor of Medicine
Stanford School of Medicine

Prior to his recruitment to Stanford as chief of the division of general medical disciplines in May, 2009, Dr. Cullen was a professor of medicine and public health and director of the Occupational and Environmental Medicine Program (OEM) at Yale University School of Medicine.  He received his BA from Harvard College in 1971 and his MD from Yale University School of Medicine in 1976.  Dr. Cullen completed his residency in internal medicine at Yale and trained in clinical epidemiology before joining the faculty there as an assistant professor in 1980. Early in his career Dr. Cullen focused on introducing concepts of clinical epidemiology into occupational and environmental medicine as a counterpart to the prevailing approaches of population epidemiology and animal toxicology.  Early research interests included the biologic effects of lead, beryllium, solvents and asbestos.  As an outgrowth of his asbestos work, he was a Co-PI on the CARET trial which examined the impacts of vitamin A and beta carotene on the incidence of lung cancer in a high risk population.  In the mid-90's he initiated a large collaborative project on occupational asthma, integrating mechanistic, clinical and epidemiologic components.


Previous Lectures

June 7, 2016, 3:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Building 10, Lipsett Amphitheater

Olufunmilayo I. Olopade, M.D., M.A.C.P. The Genomic Landscape of Breast Cancer in Women of African Ancestry *

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Olufunmilayo I. Olopade, M.D., F.A.C.P.
Walter L. Palmer Distinguished Service Professor of Medicine and Human Genetics
Associate Dean, Global Health
Director, Center for Clinical Cancer Genetics
University of Chicago School of Medicine

Dr. Olopade is an expert in cancer risk assessment and individualized treatment for the most aggressive forms of breast cancer, having developed novel management strategies based on an understanding of the altered genes in individual patients. She stresses comprehensive risk reducing strategies and prevention in high-risk populations, as well as earlier detection through advanced imaging technologies.

Dr. Olopade has received numerous honors and awards, including honorary degrees from North Central, Dominican, Bowdoin, and Princeton universities. She is also a recipient of the Doris Duke Distinguished Clinical Scientist and Exceptional Mentor Award, an American Cancer Society Clinical Research Professorship, a MacArthur Foundation "Genius" Fellowship and Officer of the Order of the Niger Award. Dr. Olopade is an elected member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the American Philosophical Society. She currently serves on the board of directors for the American Board of Internal Medicine, the National Cancer Advisory Board, Susan G. Komen for the Cure, Cancer IQ, and the Lyric Opera.

Read more about: Olufunmilayo I. Olopade, M.D., F.A.C.P. []

* A joint presentation between the Genomics and Health Disparities Lecture Series and the DIR Genome Seminar Series.

April 18, 2016, 3:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Building 50, 1st Floor Conference Room (1227)

Photo of Gerardo Jimenez-Sanchez, M.D., Ph.D. Genomics in Mexico: Implications for Health Care and the Bioeconomy

YouTube video View the Lecture Video

Gerardo Jimenez-Sanchez, M.D., Ph.D.
Adjunct Professor, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health
Program Director, Genomic Medicine and Bioeconomy
Executive President, Global Biotech Consulting Group
Chairman of the Board, Genomica & Bioeconomia
Founding Director of the National Institute of Genomic Medicine (INMEGEN) in Mexico

Dr. Jimenez has played a key role in the development of research in genomics in Mexico. As the Founding Director of the National Institute of Genomic Medicine and Founding President of the Mexican Society of Genomic Medicine, he has led the creation of the scientific networks and infrastructure behind the country's genomic medicine strategy.

He has served as a Council Member in Biotechnology to the United Nations Secretary General, and is currently a member of the Scientific Council for the Grand Challenges in Genomics at the World Health Organization. His research has contributed to the construction of a haplotype map of the Mexican population, and continues to focus on the association of genetic risk factors and disease. In addition, he chairs the initiative on genomics and bioeconomy in Mexico, as well as private sector work with Global Biotech Consulting Group.

Dr. Jimenez earned a medical degree from the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM), and a Ph.D. in Human Genetics and Molecular Biology from Johns Hopkins. He is an Adjunct Professor of Epidemiology and Program Director of Genomics and Bioeconomy at the Harvard School of Public Health.

Read more about: Gerardo Jimenez-Sanchez, M.D., Ph.D. []

March 7, 2016, 3:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Building 10, Lipsett Amphitheater

Neil Powe, M.D., M.P.H. Chronic Kidney Disease - A Window into Understanding Health Disparities 

YouTube video View the Lecture Video | Slides PDF file

Neil Powe, M.D., M.P.H., M.B.A.
Chief of Medicine, Priscilla Chan and Mark Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital (SFGH)
Professor, Center for Vulnerable Populations, SFGH
Constance B. Wofsy Distinguished Professor and
Vice-Chair of Medicine, University of California San Francisco

Dr. Powe is the Chief of Medicine at Priscilla Chan and Mark Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital, and the Constance B. Wofsy Distinguished Professor and Vice-Chair of Medicine at the University of California San Francisco.

Dr. Powe's major interests are in improving discovery, education and clinical practice in medicine, propelling academic organizations to function effectively and efficiently, enhancing scholarship and multidisciplinary collaboration, and developing future talent and leadership in the health professions. His work unites medicine and public health with the goals of saving and improving quality of human lives.

Dr. Powe has performed patient-oriented and outcomes research including work on health disparities and kidney disease publishing over 400 manuscripts.  Serving as the administrative leader of the Department of Medicine at San Francisco General Hospital he oversees 15 divisions, and more than 700 employees engaged in clinical practice, medical education and research.

Dr. Powe is a member of the Institute of Medicine and is a Master of the American College of Physicians.  He has received many honors and awards, among them Diversity Award from the Association of Professors of Medicine, the John M. Eisenberg Award for Career Achievement in Research from the Society of General Internal Medicine, the Distinguished Educator Award from the Association for Clinical Research Training and the Belding Scribner Award from the American Society of Nephrology. 

Dr. Powe earned his medical degree at Harvard Medical School and his master's in public health at Harvard School of Public Health.  He then completed his residency, was a Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholar and earned a master's in business administration at the University of Pennsylvania.

2015 Inaugural Lecture

May 27, 2015, 10:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.
Building 10, Lipsett Amphitheater

Carlos Bustamante, Ph.D. Opportunities and Challenges for Health Disparities Research in the Personal Genome Era

Carlos Bustamante, Ph.D.
Professor of Genetics
Stanford University School of Medicine

YouTube video View the Lecture Video

Dr. Bustamante is a professor in the Department of Genetics at Stanford University School of Medicine, co-founding director of the Stanford Center for Computational, Human, and Evolutionary Genomics, and director of Informatics at the Stanford Center for Genomics and Personalized Medicine. His research focuses on analyzing genome-wide patterns of variation within and between species to address fundamental questions in biology, anthropology and medicine. Dr. Bustamante's honors include receiving a John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Fellowship, the Provost Award for Distinguished Research from Cornell University, and a Sloan Research Fellowship in Molecular Biology. He is also a member of the National Advisory Council for Human Genome Research.

Last Updated: September 7, 2016