UConn, Jackson Labs to hold genomics summit this week

The University of Connecticut will host a two-day symposium starting Thursday on genomics that will highlight UConn’s partnership with The Jackson Laboratory.

The conference will feature speakers from the university and Jackson Laboratory, a Maine-based genetic research institute touted as key to Connecticut’s new bioscience initiative in Farmington.

The General Assembly and Gov. Dannel P. Malloy approved $291 million in funding last October to help The Jackson Laboratory build the173,000-square-foot facility and to subsidize research there for the next 10 years.

The laboratory is leasing space in the UConn Health Center’s cell and genome science building while the permanent facility is under construction.

During the symposium, researchers from the UConn Health Center and the laboratory will give presentations on their specialties, showing how systems genomics helps to shine light on everything from aging to breast cancer to autism.

The event will bring hundreds of researchers together from the laboratory, the UConn Health Center and the Storrs campus.

“It’s letting all the other researchers know what everybody else is working on,” said Carolyn Pennington, a spokeswoman for the health center.

It will also serve as the kickoff of a collaborative effort leading to the establishment of the Institute for Systems Genomics at UConn, a multidisciplinary effort that will involve eight schools and colleges at UConn along with the laboratory.

The conference at the Student Union in Storrs will begin with breakfast and registration at 7:45 and opening remarks at 8:15 a.m.