Imagine a future in which your physician writes a prescription for a drug made to your exact genetic specifications. Imagine genetically engineered bacteria being used to clean up toxic chemical spills. Imagine being able to diagnose the health of the oceans by analyzing the genetic makeup of a microorganism.
Thanks to genomics visionary J. Craig Venter, Ph.D., leader of the Human Genome Project that successfully sequenced human DNA in 2000, all this could become a reality very soon.
A 1975 graduate of UC San Diego, Venter is returning to his roots to accept the seventh annual Nierenberg Prize for Science in the Public Interest from Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC San Diego on Wednesday, June 20, 2007. An award ceremony followed by a lecture by Dr. Venter will begin at 7 p.m. at The Forum Theater of the La Jolla Playhouse on the UC San Diego campus, located at 2910 LJ Village Drive, La Jolla. The event is free to the public, however parking is limited.
Awarded annually by Scripps Institution of Oceanography, the Nierenberg Prize for Science in the Public Interest was created to honor the memory of William A. Nierenberg, who was director of UC San Diego's Scripps Institution of Oceanography for 20 years (1965-1986). The award is supported through gifts from the Nierenberg Family.
A bronze medal and a $25,000 prize are awarded each year for outstanding contributions to science in the public interest.
Venter, who founded the J. Craig Venter Institute (JCVI) in October 2006 headquartered in Rockville, MD, is the first person on the planet to have his genome sequenced - as well as that of his dog, Shadow.
Since then, Venter has expanded his genomic interests by attempting to cure our dependence on oil by finding fuel alternatives using microbes. He has done so while mapping the oceans in a recent Darwinesque two-and-a-half year global, circumnavigation expedition known as the Global Ocean Sampling Expedition aboard his sailboat, Sorcerer II.
Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California San Diego, is one of the oldest, largest, and most important centers for global science research and education in the world. Now in its second century of discovery, the scientific scope of the institution has grown to include biological, physical, chemical, geological, geophysical, and atmospheric studies of the earth as a system. Hundreds of research programs covering a wide range of scientific areas are under way today on every continent and in every ocean. The institution has a staff of more than 1,400 and annual expenditures of approximately $195 million from federal, state, and private sources. Scripps operates oceanographic research vessels recognized worldwide for their outstanding capabilities. Equipped with innovative instruments for ocean exploration, these ships constitute mobile laboratories and observatories that serve students and researchers from institutions throughout the world. Birch Aquarium at Scripps serves as the interpretive center of the institution and showcases Scripps research and a diverse array of marine life through exhibits and programming for more than 430,000 visitors each year. Learn more at scripps.ucsd.edu and follow us at Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
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