Knowledge about genome organization and genomic processes, such as transcription, replication and repair, has seen explosive growth over the past decade. This has been driven in large part by the development of DNA sequencing technologies and applications thereof, including genome-wide chromatin immunoprecipitation analyses and increasingly sophisticated applications of chromosome conformation capture studies. The starting hypothesis, which genome-wide studies would reveal underlying patterns that would be impossible to discern from single gene studies of yesteryear, has been convincingly vindicated by these studies.
As a result, there is now an unprecedented 3-dimensional structural view of nuclear form and function. While important new trends will, no doubt, continue to emerge, this is a good time to consolidate the general principles that have been uncovered and, perhaps more importantly, to try to understand what the many exceptions to the “general principles” might mean. Such an analysis will also provide the springboard from which the next generation of studies might take off. The future therefore must uncover “the grammar” of how cell-type specific nuclear form and function emerge during development and differentiation. The cross talk between genome and epigenome sets up the required biological dialogue and the goal of this conference is to provide the atmosphere, via talks, posters and discussions, to engage in these topics freely and deeply.
Towards these goals the Department of Animal Science, School of Life Sciences at University of Hyderabad (UoH) have brought together Indian and international scientists who share a vision of understanding nuclear processes at a molecular level. The International Conference on “Genome Architecture and Cell Fate Regulation” (GACFR, 2014) which is being organized from 1-4 December 2014 hopes that those at the early stages of their careers will seek out and engage more experienced scientists and, conversely, that senior scientists will take the time to communicate with the generation that will carry the field into the future. Prof. D. Balasubramanian, Director, L.V Prasad eye Institute was the Chief Guest at the inaugural session and he spoke about the need for such conferences in this post genomic era stressing on genome Organization and its role in promoting cell type specific gene expression patterns. Prof Jagan Pongubala of the Department of Animal Science, in his welcome address highlighted that the primary goal of this meeting is to bring together molecular, cellular scientists and computational biologists to have mutually beneficial discussions on recent advances that enabled to better understand chromatin organization and its role in cell specification. The conference started on a positive note and continues to receive appreciation by eminent scientists all over. About 200 delegates are participating in this conference out of which more than 70 are foreign delegates.
– By Anurupa Devi, Research Fellow, Department of Animal Sciences