In DepthQ&A

Former head of China's genome powerhouse starts new chapter

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Science  31 Jul 2015:
Vol. 349, Issue 6247, pp. 463
DOI: 10.1126/science.349.6247.463

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Chinese bioinformaticist Jun Wang helped make the Shenzhen-based institute BGI a global powerhouse in sequencing and genomics analysis. But he recently stepped down as head of the organization to pursue new challenges. Joining the original Beijing Genomics Institute upon its founding in 1999, Wang quickly rose from head of bioinformatics to CEO. Along the way he led BGI, which moved to Shenzhen in 2007, into some of its most ambitious projects, including an ongoing effort to sequence 10,500 bird genomes. But, "It's a good time for me to move on," he told Science in this Q&A. He wants to apply artificial intelligence techniques to the challenge of dealing with the huge data sets emerging from life science studies. His initial goal is to gather genomic and health care data for 1 million individuals to probe for hints to bettering human health.

  • * in Shanghai, China