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J. Craig Venter, Ph.D. Receives Double Helix Medal from Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory
Date:11/12/2008

Venter Shares Award with James D. Watson, Marilyn & James Simons and Sherry Lansing at Gala New York City Event

ROCKVILLE, Md., Nov. 12 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- J. Craig Venter, Ph.D., Founder and President of the J. Craig Venter Institute (JCVI), was awarded the Double Helix Medal from Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory (CSHL) on November 6th at a gala event in New York City.

Dr. Venter received the Double Helix Medal along with Dr. James D. Watson for making each of their individual genome sequences available for scientific use on the Internet and for promoting awareness of the public health advantages of "personalized genomes."

According to Dr. Bruce Stillman, CSHL President, "The Double Helix Medals recognize individuals who have dedicated their lives to raising the awareness of the importance of genetics research for improving the health of people everywhere." Inaugurated in 2006, the medal is named for the iconic "winding-staircase" structure of the DNA molecule, discovered by Dr. Watson along with Dr. Francis Crick in 1953.

In 2007 Dr. Venter and his team published the first diploid genome, which was his genome and represents both sets of chromosomes inherited from each of his parents. That publication was the first human genome publication since the first sequence and analysis of the human genome published in Science in 2001 by Dr. Venter and colleagues at Celera Genomics. The publicly funded genome project also published their version of the human genome at the same time in the journal Nature.

Dr. Venter and his team are continuing to analyze his genome and are planning to sequence and analyze hundreds to thousands of genomes over the next decade. He has advocated the public release of individual genomes with the view that a growing database in which scientists can compare DNA profiles with health histories and traits will help them understand in greater detail the impact of genetics upon human health. Dr. Venter and h
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SOURCE J. Craig Venter Institute
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