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BCCS student wins prestigious poster prize

Adam Sardar

Adam Sardar

28 July 2011

Adam Sardar, a penultimate-year PhD student at the Bristol Centre for Complexity Science (BCCS), has won the Outstanding Poster Award at the premier international computational biology conference ISMB2011 for his work on horizontal gene transfer and its impact on the tree of life.

With almost 2,000 delegates, the Intelligent Systems for Molecular Biology (ISMB) conference is the main international setting for work of this kind. More than 760 posters were submitted, representing the work of principal investigators, post-doctoral and PhD students from around the world, but only two awards were given. Sardar was selected to give an eight-minute highlight talk at the conference from his abstract submission alone.

He explained: ‘Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is the process by which genetic material can be passed between organisms through means other than parent-child inheritance. I think that the reason that the judges liked the work is that it operates on a much greater scale than previous studies, giving a measure as to the global extent of HGT across the tree of life. My next goal is to produce an updated tree of life, which fully takes into account these processes.’

Professor John Hogan, Director of BCCS, commented: ‘I am delighted about Adam’s outstanding success. He is continuing the fine tradition of BCCS students who go to the top meetings and come away with the top prizes. They can do this because their interdisciplinary training puts them in the vanguard of progress.’

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