Association for Molecular Pathology                       
Newsletter
February 2009, Volume 15, Number 1

Inside this Issue

Front Page
President's Message
Special Features
• Message from the Past President
• 
AMP Test Directory
• CHAMP
• 
The Journal of Molecular Diagnostics
• Web Editorial Board Report
• 2008 Annual Meeting Photo
  Album
Committee Reports
• Clinical Practice Committee
• Economic Affairs Committee
• Membership & Professional   
  Development Committee
• Nominating Committee
• Professional Relations
  Committee
• Program Committee
• Publications Committee
• Strategic Planning Committee
• Training & Education Committee
Subdivision Reports
• Genetics
• Hematopathology
• Infectious Diseases
• Solid Tumors
2009 AMP Officers and Appointees

Genetics Subdivision Report

Hanna Rennert, PhD By Hanna Rennert, PhD
Chair, Genetics Subdivision
e-mail: har2006@med.cornell.edu

Greetings and Happy New Year from the frosty Big Apple!  I am very excited to kick-off our New Year's activities and to serve as your Genetic Subdivision Chair.  I would first like to thank our outgoing Chair, Mary Lowery Nordberg who did an extraordinary job mentoring me and putting together such a great program for the Genetics Subdivision.  I also thank the Program Committee led by Jeffrey Kant for organizing an outstanding program for the 2008 Annual Meeting, including a Saturday Evening Social Event Live solely based on our own members participation (M-AMP).  Special thanks also to other 2008 Genetics Subdivision members for their contribution to the success of our Meeting: Julie Gastier-Foster (Clinical Practice Committee), Rizwan Naeem (Nominating Committee), Siby Sebastian (Nominating Committee) and Madhuri Hegde (Training & Education).  The Genetic Plenary Session at the 2008 Meeting focused on copy number variation and genetic disorders.  James Lupski covered some of the newer aspects of copy number variation, presenting novel data regarding genetic mechanisms associated with the development of genetic rearrangements responsible for numerous genetic diseases.  This was followed by an exciting workshop given by Bassem Bejjani, Gail Herman and Livija Medne on array CGH and copy number variants in clinical practice.  Debra Leonard and Kathleen Hudson gave a comprehensive workshop about the promise and challenges of personalized medicine that was followed by a great panel discussion.  Tom Prior continued drawing a large audience of AMP puzzlers in his Puzzlers by Prior workshop.  We hope that Tom will continue to challenge us with a new collection of puzzles for the 2009 Meeting!  The last Workshop involved five speakers, who are mostly either trainees or technologists (Patrick Lundquist, Brent Ferrell, Fernanda Sabato, Anne Igbokwe and Carleta Maurice) that presented their work as platform presentations.  We received many great comments on the quality of the work presented and the speakers. 

I want to extend a very special thanks to all the M-AMPs who woke up early to attend the Early Bird Sessions.  The popularity and success of the Early Bird Session in Genetics continues to grow each year!  This year’s Early Bird Sessions focused on three major topics: analysis of variants of uncertain significance (Hanna Rennert), Bayesian analysis given by Shuji Ogino and a personal genomic workshop moderated by Jeffery Kant.  As a benefit to AMP members, many of these presentations from the 2008 Annual Meeting are available in the AMP Web Library (www.asip.org/CVWEB_AMP/WebLibrary/Weblib.htm).

The Annual Genetics Subdivision Business Luncheon provided us with many new and interesting ideas for potential topics for the upcoming 2009 Annual Meeting.  Ira Lubin and Jean Amos Wilson started off the luncheon with an overview of their project carried out in collaboration with the AMP Clinical Practice Committee aimed at evaluating molecular genetic test ordering and reporting of results, using cystic fibrosis as a model.  Findings from this work are important for improving the quality of test-ordering and results-reporting practices in diagnostic laboratories. 

I would like to extend a warm welcome to our new 2009 Chair-Elect Arlene Buller.  I look forward to working with Arlene and the rest of the Genetic Subdivision leadership, Kasinathan Muralidharan, Narasimhan Nagan, Siby Sebastian, Min Fang, Madhuri Hegde and Linda Jo Bone Jeng to put together a wonderful program for the 2009 Annual Meeting.  Thanks to the members of the Genetic Subdivision, Arlene and I are already hitting the ground running.  Feedback from the luncheon and discussions with members has allowed us to come with a list of potential topics for the 2009 Annual Meeting.  The top topics include molecular genetics of common diseases, genetic analysis of complex disorders, next generation sequencing and gene patenting.  We are looking forward to seeing all of you in Florida.  Please e-mail either me or Arlene Buller (Arlene.M.Buller@questdiagnostics.com), with your suggestions and ideas for speakers, topics and/or the next great puzzles.