Molecular Medicine
Tri-Conference Plenary Session

The Tri-Conference has been and will continue to be a platform in recognizing the potential for new technologies and research in molecular medicine, diagnostics, drug discovery, and drug development that have a pivotal role in mitigating disease, improving access to healthcare, and identifying transformative treatments. Our plenary keynote speakers for this meeting will inspire you to continue efforts in developing novel medicines, diagnostics, therapeutics, and approaches to gain a greater understanding of the underpinnings of cancer and advance personalized medicine. Join over 750+ of your colleagues in each of these plenary keynote presentations. They are the only time each day that bring all attendees from the 14 conference tracks together in one room.

Monday, February 20

5:00 – 6:00 pm

Keynote Introduction:

DiaCartaNext-Generation Precision Molecular Diagnostics Powered by XNA

Michael J. Powell, Ph.D., Chief Scientific Officer, DiaCarta

Powell_MichaelDiaCarta's XNA-based platforms are revolutionizing oncology diagnostics and precision medicine. QClamp® is a qPCR method that rapidly and sensitively detect mutations in tumor-derived DNA. OptiSeq(TM) is an innovative NGS application of gene locus specific XNA's to detect tumor 'hotspot' mutations with exquisite precision and sensitivity from liquid biopsy and FNA samples. XNA technology also enhances the screening for CRISPR/Cas9 gene-editing and improves NGS library preparation.

Plenary Keynote Presentation

Michael Karin, Ph.D., Distinguished Professor of Pharmacology, University of California, San Diego School of Medicine

Michael KarinDr. Karin received his BSc in Biology in 1975 at Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel and his Ph.D. in Molecular Biology in 1979, at the University of California, Los Angeles. Dr. Karin is currently a Distinguished Professor of Pharmacology and Pathology at the School of Medicine, University of California, San Diego, where has been on the faculty since 1986. Dr. Karin has received numerous awards including the Oppenheimer Award for Excellence in Research from the Endocrine Society in 1990, an American Cancer Society Research Professorship in 1999, the C.E.R.I.E.S. Research Award for Physiology or Biology of the Skin in 2000, the Harvey Prize in Human Health in 2011, the Brupbacher Prize in Cancer Research in 2013 and the William B. Coley Award for Distinguished Research in Basic and Tumor Immunology in 2013. He was a cofounder of Signal Pharmaceutical (currently Celgene) and served as a member of the National Advisory Council for Environmental Health Sciences. He has been an American Cancer Society Research Professor since 1999. Dr. Karin was elected as a member of the US National Academy of Sciences in 2005, the Institute of Medicine in 2011 and as an associate member of the European Molecular Biology Association in 2007. Much of Dr. Karin’s current activity is focused on understanding the link between inflammation, cancer and metabolic disease as well as on understanding the signaling mechanisms used by receptors involved in inflammation and innate immunity. In addition to establishing molecular links between obesity, inflammation and cancer, this work has revealed new targets for cancer prevention and therapy.

Tuesday, February 21

8:00 – 9:00 am

Plenary Keynote Presentation: One in a Billion: The Story of Nic Volker and the Dawn of Genomic Medicine

Amylynne Santiago VolkerAmylynne Santiago Volker, Founder, Nicholas Volker One In A Billion Foundation

Liz WortheyLiz Worthey, Ph.D., Faculty Investigator and Director, Software Development & Informatics, HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology

Kathleen GallagherKathleen Gallagher, Reporter, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel; Co-Author, One in a Billion: The Story of Nic Volker and the Dawn of Genomic Medicine

Nic Volker had a never-before-seen disease and a mother who would stop at nothing to ensure his survival. Amylynne Santiago Volker; Kathleen Gallagher, one of two Pulitzer Prize-winning reporters who chronicled the case; and Liz Worthey, the bioinformatician who searched Nic’s exome for an answer, discuss the pioneering effort to save Nic by obtaining a diagnosis from exome sequencing. They will also tell the story of how Amylynne’s fierce advocacy during her desperately ill son’s more than three year diagnostic odyssey helped get him to the doctor who saw that Nic’s mysterious disease likely had genetic underpinnings.

Wednesday, February 22

8:00 – 10:00 am

Plenary Session Panel: Emerging Technologies and Industry Perspectives


Joe Ferrara, President, Boston Healthcare

Rudi Pauwels, Ph.D., Founder & CEO, Biocartis

Dick Rubin, Vice President, Sales & Marketing Accel Biotech LLC

This panel session will feature a series of presentations on emerging and hot technologies in molecular medicine. Each speaker will have 7 minutes at the podium. After all speakers have presented, there will be a moderated Q&A with attendees. The presentations are not meant to be a corporate or specific product pitch. Each speaker will focus on a technology and solution framed around a motivational clinical problem and how their particular company/organization is solving it.

Sponsored by:

Accel Biotech


Boston Healthcare

Menarini Silicon Biosystems






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Premier Sponsors

Beckman Coulter Life Sciences 

Boston Healthcare



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Cofactor Genonics


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