Short Course on Genetics
Biomarkers in Population Research: What, Why, and How
Course Instructor, Karen Sugden, PhD
SSRI – Events Room
Week One (June 22, 2010 – 12:00 pm to 1:30 pm)
Introduction to biomarkers and genetics: a biology refresher
This session is intended as a refresher and/or introduction to biomarkers and genetics for researchers outside of the basic biological sciences. Topics for discussion will include:
- The basics of biomarkers such as DNA, RNA and proteins.
- Biological roles and relationships between biomarkers.
- The meaning of different genetic/biological terms.
Week Two (June 29, 2010 – 12:00 pm to 1:30 pm)
Measurement and technical application of biological material: the why, what and how of biomarker assessment
This session will be an overview of the collection and application of biomarker-derived data. It is intended for researchers wishing to learn what biomarkers could add to their current data collection strategies. Topics for discussion will include:
- Why different biological materials are collected (e.g. blood, saliva).
- What information can be obtained (e.g. DNA, RNA, protein).
- How it can be applied (e.g. genotyping, whole genome transcriptomics, cytokine levels).
- The advantages and disadvantages of different biomarkers and tissue types.
- How this information can be used to inform data collection strategies.
Week Three (July 6, 2010 – 12:00 pm to 1:30 pm)
What can and can’t we collect in the field?: practical implications of biological material collection
This session is intended for researchers who wish to embark on biomarker assessment and want to learn how to put it into practice. Topics for discussion will include:
- How to make certain that tissues are collected in such a way as to maximize their future value.
- What resources are needed, such as equipment and personnel, as well as logistical and financial implications.
- How to ensure that resultant data is of high quality.
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