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By Kevin Davies, Editor-in-Chief


HONORED: NHGRI deputy director Alan Guttmacher accepted the award on Collins' behalf from Bio·IT World president and publisher Alan Bergstein.
— Kevin Davies
August 18, 2004 | Francis Collins, director of the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI), spoke of collaboration and computation during his speech accepting his 2004 Bio·IT World President's Award.

In a pre-recorded video message (he was taking a well-earned vacation in Kenya), Collins confessed he was "greatly surprised and very honored and flattered" to receive Bio·IT World's most prestigious annual award. As a government employee, he felt he was "a somewhat unusual choice" for a publication more closely identified with the business community, but he said, "I think this is an indication of how we're all working together in this [genome] era."

Collins added modestly: "I think I am being recognized really as a symbol of the thousands of scientists who have worked together on the Human Genome Project to generate very large data sets of information that was immediately put into the public domain, so that all the smart computational biologists could start working on it and tell us what it all means."

Researchers now face a number of computational challenges in the wake of the genome sequence, Collins said, including the International HapMap Project to chart human DNA variation; the ENCODE (Encyclopedia of DNA Elements) program to characterize the function of defined stretches of the genome; and the new chemical genomics initiative to bring together biological space and chemical space.


BEST PRACTITIONERS: NHGRI deputy director Alan Guttmacher (center), who accepted the President's Award on behalf of Francis Collins, is flanked by Best Practices grand prize and honorable recognition award winners; in the back row, Bio·IT World editors.


Bio·IT World Best Practices Awards 2004
Bio•IT World’s Best Practices Awards program hopes to capture the imagination and effectiveness of advancing technology being used to drive biomedical advances.
· A Best Practices Odyssey 
By John Russell
· Francis Collins Receives President’s Award
By Kevin Davies
· Keynote Speakers Chide Industry Leaders
By Anthony Strattner
Grand Winners
· Curbing a Killer
Drug Discovery and Development — Iconix Pharmaceuticals
· Tracking Better Lab Operations
IT Infrastructure and Informatics — Baylor College of Medicine
· Interactive Decision Making
Knowledge Management and Collaboration — SurroMed
· The Pursuit of Process
Regulatory Compliance — Endo Pharmaceuticals
 
· I, Virtual Patient
Clinical Research and Trials — Roche Diagnostics
· Project Summaries of All Entries


Photo of winners by Photographics




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