Genome-scale variation in health and disease

The sophisticated approaches of genomics are increasingly being used to analyze the majority of the genetic material contained within cells. The tools of genomics have catalyzed remarkable developments in health and disease research. These tools continue to evolve at a rapid pace, making possible additional health research opportunities that are increasingly comprehensive. Dr. Marco Marra is Director of the British Columbia Cancer Agency Genome Sciences Centre. Dr. Marra was funded as an MSFHR Scholar in 2001, with a specific focus of using genomics to comprehensively search for genes that play roles in cancer. In 2003, Dr. Marra also distinguished himself as leading the team that cracked the genetic code for SARS. In addition to his continuing work in cancer genomics, Dr. Marra is also working to identify and analyze DNA mutations correlated with, or causing, mental retardation. A consistent theme in Dr. Marra’s research is the identification and analysis of new genes and new gene products to determine their potential for use as new therapies or vaccines to combat cancer, infectious diseases, and other disorders.