BIG 18

Keynote Speaker

  Dr.   Robert Hugh  " Bob"   Waterston

Dr. Robert Hugh "Bob" Waterston

Keynote Speaker

From 9:30 to 10:30 in the Great Hall (North), UBC Nest

Dr. Waterston worked jointly with Dr. John Sulston to commandeer the initial sequencing of the C.elegans worm genome in 1989. This culminated in the first published genome of a multicellular organism - C.elegans - 9 years later, in 1998. Concurrently, Dr. Waterston & Dr. Sulston played key roles in the sequencing of the first human genome. In fact, Dr. Waterston's research group contributed more of the finished human genome sequence than any other American laboratory.

Comprehensive Single Cell profiling of the nematode, C. elegans

Sydney Brenner selected C. elegans for study in the 1960’s because its simplicity and powerful genetics held the promise of a comprehensive understanding of its development and behavior. Early comprehensive datasets included the description
of its complete developmental lineage and its neuronal wiring diagram, followed later by its complete genome sequence. My lab has pursued a variety of approaches to understand how that genome is read out to produce a living worm. These studies
have included video recording the expression of more than 200 transcription factors in individual cells during embryo development, in depth analysis of the RNA transcripts throughout the life cycle and embryonic tissues and the elucidation of transcription factor binding sites. Most recently, we have collaborated with the Trapnell and Shendure labs to carry out comprehensive transcriptional profiling of
single cells from L2 larvae and other populations. Combining these latest results with transcription factor binding sites begins to reveal the gene regulatory network underlying patterns of gene expression.