GenomeWeb’s eighth annual list of 20 promising young investigators includes JAX Assistant Professors Zhengqing Ouyang, Ph.D., Michael Stitzel, Ph.D., and Haoyi Wang, Ph.D. According to GenomeWeb science features editor Ciara Curtin, who compiled the 2014 list, the publication reaches out to top biomedical researchers to recommend early-career scientists that they believe are doing promising work.
The three young scientists are part of the Laboratory’s recruitment campaign to add faculty at the new Jackson Laboratory for Genomic Medicine research center in Farmington, Conn., as well as the institution’s headquarters campus in Bar Harbor, Maine. “Having three investigators on this list of 20 really speaks to the exceptional talent of the scientists we have recruited to our research team,” says JAX President and CEO Edison Liu, M.D.
Ouyang, a computational biologist who joined the Laboratory from Stanford University in December 2012, uses statistical modeling and next-generation sequencing data to understand noncoding regions of RNA, the so-called “secondary genetic code.” Stanford’s Wing Wang, Ph.D., Ouyang’s mentor during his predoctoral work, nominated him for the list.
Stitzel’s nomination came from Francis Collins, M.D., director of the National Institutes of Health, in whose lab Stitzel formerly worked as a postdoc. Stitzel studies the genetics and epigenetics of islet dysfunction and type 2 diabetes; like Ouyang, his lab is on the JAX Genomic Medicine campus in Connecticut.
Rudolf Jaenisch, a pioneer in stem cell research at the Whitehead Institute of MIT, nominated Wang, a former student in his laboratory. Wang, who joined the JAX Bar Harbor faculty at the end of 2013, is working to develop innovative new gene-targeting technologies to better understand diseases and defects associated with the Y chromosome.
The Jackson Laboratory is an independent, nonprofit biomedical research institution based in Bar Harbor, Maine, with a facility in Sacramento, Calif., and a new genomic medicine institute in Farmington, Conn. It employs more than 1,600 staff, and its mission is to discover precise genomic solutions for disease and empower the global biomedical community in the shared quest to improve human health.