Single Cell Analysis Symposium

March 12, 2014 @ the University of Pennsylvania

Hold the date for this all-day symposium. Speakers include Nancy Allbritton, Helen Blau, Chi Dang, Jim Eberwine, Junhyong Kim, Christopher Murray, Garry Nolan, Arjun Raj and Sherman Weissman.

More details and registration here for this free event.


The next frontier in the genome sciences will be developing technology that captures novel quantitative biological measurements ... more about genomics

PGFI News and In the Press

Click to view PGFI Newsletters and brochure

Gene Therapy Study Named Top 10

PGFI member Jean Bennett, F.M. Kirby Professor of Ophthalmology, was recognized by the Clinical Research Forum for her 2012 published work showing the potential of gene therapy to restore vision in patients blinded by Leber’s Congenital Amaurosis. These Top 10 Clinical Research Achievement awardees were selected as exemplars of scientific innovation that have resulted in clinical advances having tremendous potential to benefit human health.

Two PGFI Members Honored by Academy

Shelley Berger, PIK Professor and Daniel S. Och Professor, and Virginia M.-Y. Lee, John H. Ware 3rd Professor in Alzheimer’s Research, have been elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Drs. Berger and Lee were two of three Penn faculty inducted into the 2013 class. The Academy honors persons of exceptional achievement with membership; members then serve by applying their expertise toward Academy projects addressing contemporary policy issues.

Senior Scholar Award for Aging Research

PGFI member Dr. Amita Sehgal was awarded $600,000 to pursue her work on circadian rhythms and aging by the Ellison Medical Foundation’s Senior Scholar program. Dr. Sehgal, professor of neuroscience and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator, is the sixth and most recent PGFI member who has earned a Senior Scholar Award (past awardees include Drs. J. Kim, J. Eberwine, S. Berger, N. Bonini, and D. Roos).

Accolades to PGFI members in SEAS

PGFI members Drs. George Pappas and Vijay Kumar, in the School of Engineering and Applied Science, were awarded $2.75 million for the Penn-based portion of an interdisciplinary collaboration on swarm-based computing and robotics. Dr. Kuma
r also recently was honored with the George H. Heilmeier Faculty Award for Excellence in Research for 2012-13 and election into the National Academy of Engineering. Dr. Kumar, who is on sabbatical, is currently serving as the Assistant Director for Robotics and Cyber Physical Systems at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy.

Understanding transcriptome variability of excitable cells

PGFI co-Directors Jim Eberwine, Elmer Holmes Bobst Professor of Pharmacology, and Junhyong Kim, Edmund J. and Louise W. Kahn Professor of Biology, received $2 million/year for five years from NIH's Single Cell Analysis Program to lead a project that will characterize mRNA in neurons and heart cells. Using novel technologies that allow for capturing and manipulating all of the mRNA in a single cell, this project will shed light on why individual cells of the same type often behave very differently (read more).

Gustavo Aguirre, Shelly Berger and Nancy Bonini were honored with election to the National Academies Institute of Medicine on Oct. 15, 2012. New IOM members are chosen for their outstanding contributions to the medical sciences, health care, and public health.
The Arthur Vining Davis Foundations awarded PGFI a grant to support a 4-year project to bring genomics to high school classrooms. The project will design a genomics curriculum, host teacher-training workshops, and provide support for classroom implementation, including access to an equipment loaner program.

PGFI Members receive McKnight Technology Award

Jim Eberwine (PGFI Co-Director, Elmer Holmes Bobst Prof of Pharmacology) and Ivan Dmochowski (PGFI member, Assoc Prof of Chemistry) were awarded a Technological Innovations in Neuroscience Award by the McKnight Foundation to pursue their novel systems-level approach for isolating RNA from live cells. This Transcriptome In Vivo Analysis tag (TIVA-tag) methodology will enable quantification of genomics processes in natural cellular contexts.

Nancy Bonini’s contributions to understanding the molecular mechanisms of human neurodegenerative diseases and Gideon Dreyfuss' research on RNA-binding proteins and their role in degenerative diseases were recognized by the National Academy of Sciences with their election to NAS membership in May 2012. Dr. Bonini is Lucille B. Williams Professor of Biology in the School of Arts and Sciences and Dr. Dreyfuss is Isaac Norris Professor in the Perelman School of Medicine’s Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.

PGFI member joins Royal Society

PGFI Associate Director elected to American Academy of Arts and Sciences

Former PGFI Director profiled in Nature Biotechnology

PGFI members among Ellison Medical Foundation Senior Scholars in Aging for 2010

High-Throughput Sequencing Facility

PGFI Establishes New Translational and Personalized Genomics Centers

Guggenheim Fellowship Awarded to Dr. Kim

PGFI member elected to AAM

PGFI welcomes new Assistant Professor of Genetics

2001-2009 Stories

PGFI Announcements

The PGFI Fall 2013 Newsletter can be viewed here.

Educational Facility Professional Development Workshops can be applied for here.



Based at the University of Pennsylvania, Penn Genome Frontiers Institute (PGFI) is a university-wide institute dedicated to the advancement of the interdisciplinary field of genomics research. PGFI fosters collaborations and scientific exchange across biology, veterinary medicine, pharmacology, medicine, genetics, microbiology, engineering, physics, chemistry and psychology. Our mission...