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Zimmerman receives Richard King Trainee Award for best publication in genetics in medicine

Rebekah Stackpole Zimmerman is the recipient of the Richard King Trainee Award. This award was instituted two years ago by the American College of Medical Genetics Foundation to encourage ABMG trainees in their careers and to foster the publication of quality research in Genetics in Medicine (GIM).

Each year the editorial board reviews all articles published in GIM by an ABMG trainee who was either a first or corresponding author during that year. The manuscript felt to have the most merit is selected and the Richard King Award is then given at the annual American College of Medical Genetics (ACMG) meeting.

Dr. Zimmerman, a laboratory director at BioReference Laboratories, Inc., in Elmwood Park, New Jersey, was a Clinical Molecular Genetics Fellow at Harvard University Medical School in 2010, received her PhD in Genetics in 2008 from Tufts University Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences, and received her BS in Biochemistry from Syracuse University in 2002.

Dr. Zimmerman was given the award for her manuscript titled "A Novel Custom Resequencing Array for Dilated Cardiomyopthy," which was published in the May 2010 issue of Genetics in Medicine.

Dr. Zimmerman and colleagues addressed the challenge of designing an assay to improve the clinical sensitivity of genetic testing for Dilated Cardiomyopathy (DCM). Creating a test that increased the number of genes sequenced from 10 to 19 required using a sequencing technology other than the gold standard of Sanger sequencing. This manuscript presented the validation of the use of a resequencing array, the DCM CardioChip, to sequence 19 genes associated with DCM. The study showed that, in comparison to Sanger sequencing, the DCM CardioChip reduced test cost and turn around time by approximately 50%, while also predicting to increase the clinical sensitivity.

The award is given by the American College of Medical Genetics Foundation and is named for Dr. Richard King in recognition of his instrumental role in creating Genetics in Medicine and serving as the first and founding Editor-in-Chief of the journal.

Eligible trainees include those in the following programs: Clinical Biochemical Genetics; Clinical Cytogenetics; Clinical Molecular Genetics Combined Internal Medicine/Genetics; Combined Pediatrics/Genetics; PhD Medical Genetics.


Contact: Kathy Ridgely Beal, MBA
American College of Medical Genetics

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