Thursday, 21 November 2013

Fred Sanger, father of sequencing, died at the age 95

As researchers interested in genomics and NGS we could not miss to spent few words in memory of Fred Sanger, the two-time nobel prize winner that developed the Sanger sequencing method. He was a dedicated and brilliant scientists that, unusual for someone of his stature, spent his most of his career in a laboratory. Even after receiving his first Nobel for the discovery of insulin protein structure, he shifted is interest on DNA and continued to perform many experiments himself.
s to his genius we have been able to read the sequence from DNA molecule, deciphering the secrets of gene information. Its work opened the door for sequencing automation, so being the foundation for the entire genomic era and finally for the assembly of the complete human DNA sequence. To honor his achivements, the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute at Hinxton, where work on the genome continues, is named after him.
Even if something new has appeared in the field with NGS and its innovative techniques, Fred Sanger still the real father of sequencing!

"Fred can fairly be called the father of the genomic era: his work laid the foundations of humanity's ability to read and understand the genetic code, which has revolutionized biology and is today contributing to transformative improvements in healthcare," Jeremy Farrar, the director of the Wellcome Trust.

“Fred was one of the outstanding scientists of the last century and it is simply impossible to overestimate the impact he has had on modern genetics and molecular biology. Moreover, by his modest manner and his quiet and determined way of carrying out experiments himself right to the end of his career, he was a superb role model and inspiration for young scientists everywhere." Venki Ramakrishnan, deputy director of the Laboratory for Molecular Biology.

"Fred was an inspiration to many, for his brilliant work, for his quiet determination and for his modesty. He was a outstanding investigator, with a dogged determination to solve questions that have led to transformations in how we perceive our world" - Prof Sir Mike Stratton, director of the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute

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