Fall 2019 Newsletter

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Photo credit: Naomi Blinick, Minnesota Aquatic Invasive Species Research Center


Innovation lab

Innovation Lab | Zebra mussel genome unveiled

In collaboration with the Minnesota Aquatic Invasive Species Research Center, the Minnesota Supercomputing Institute, and other scientists, the UMGC used a combination of short-read sequencing, long-read sequencing and Hi-C scaffolding to generate a chromosome-scale assembly of the highly repetitive zebra mussel genome, the highest-quality molluscan assembly to date. The genome will provide biological insights on the invasive success of this species. Read more about the assembly and media coverage.


Funded services

Funded Services | Access the skills of a highly-trained genomics collaborator

The UMGC employs so-called “Funded Services” scientists who are contracted out to work with UMN PIs on their complex genetics and genomics research projects, within our labs. The team is comprised of PhD-level scientists with backgrounds spanning microbiology, cancer and plant biology, genotyping, next-generation sequencing, and epigenetics. Find out if funded services could be your research solution.


DIY geonoimics

DIY Genomics | Directly sequence DNA or RNA in real-time on your timeline

As a small benchtop instrument with a straightforward library prep and loading protocol, the GridION is an optimal Do-It-Yourself instrument that gives researchers a rapid, scalable sequencing solution on their own schedule. With high-quality DNA as input, this technology is capable of producing ultra-long reads up to 100’s of kb in length. Learn more about DIY sequencing.


Vote circle

GenoFest | Who has “qualified” for the great spatial debate?

Join us on Friday, October 4th to learn about spatial genomics. Watch leaders in this field square-off in a lively debate-style format with “opening statements”, audience questions, and moderation by UMGC director, Kenny Beckman, and UIC director, Mark Sanders, to rein in any rambling “candidates” and to ask pointed questions.

Candidates: 10X Genomics, NanoString, BioSpyder, and Cartana.

Friday, October 4th | 9:30 – 5:00 PM
1-125 Cancer & Cardiovascular Research Building



The UMGC develops novel genomic approaches through research & development in our Innovation Lab and also in collaboration with clients. Please see our website for our complete list of publications.

Chen LY, Morales-Briones DF, Passow CN, Ya Y. “Performance of gene expression analyses using de novo assembled transcripts in polyploid species.” Bioinformatics. 2019 Aug 10. pii: btz620. Funded Services collaboration.

Singh A, Ramachandran S, Graham ML, Daneshmandi S, Heller D, Suarez-Pinzon WL, Balamurugan AN, Ansite JD, Wilhelm JJ, Yang A, Zhang Y, Palani NP, Abrahante JE, Burlak C, Miller SD, Luo X, Hering BJ. “Long-term tolerance of islet allografts in nonhuman primates induced by apoptotic donor leukocytes.” Nat Commun. 2019 Aug 2;10(1):3495. Funded Services collaboration.

McCartney MA, Auch B, Kono T, Mallez S, Zhang Y, Obille A, Becker A, Abrahante JE, Garbe J, Badalamenti JP, Herman A, Mangelson H, Liachko I, Sullivan S, Sone ED, Koren S, Silverstein KAT, Beckman KB, Gohl DM. “The Genome of the Zebra Mussel, Dreissena polymorpha: A Resource for Invasive Species Research.” bioRxiv 696732. 2019 July 9. Innovation Lab.

Minato Y, Gohl DM, Thiede JM, Chacón JM, Harcombe WR, Maruyama F, Baughn AD. “Genomewide Assessment of Mycobacterium tuberculosis Conditionally Essential Metabolic Pathways.” mSystems. 2019 Jun 25;4(4). pii: e00070-19. Innovation Lab collaboration.

Dorajoo R, Chang X, Gurung RL, Li Z, Wang L, Wang R, Beckman KB, Adams-Haduch J, M Y, Liu S, Meah WY, Sim KS, Lim SC, Friedlander Y, Liu J, van Dam RM, Yuan JM, Koh WP, Khor CC, Heng CK. “Loci for human leukocyte telomere length in the Singaporean Chinese population and transethnic genetic studies.” Nat Commun. 2019 Jun 6;10(1):2491. UMGC Collaboration.


Masonic Cancer Center Grants

To support cancer genomics research on complex projects, the Masonic Cancer Center (MCC) has a unique funding opportunity for MCC members that provides awards for Funded Services with the UMGC. Awarded projects, as determined by the MCC, will receive a tailored research strategy that is designed and implemented by the Funded Services team to achieve their specific cancer research goal. Learn more about the application process.

Job Opportunities | The UMGC is a dynamic, team-driven workplace, where scientists with all levels of training (recent undergraduates through experienced Ph.D.s) collaborate in a productive work environment. We offer a competitive salary with comprehensive U of M benefits. Sign-up to be on our job mailing list to hear about upcoming postings.