Welcome to the Genetics and Epigenetics program!

The Genetics and Epigenetics program provides students an opportunity to undertake concentrated study in the areas of model organism genetics, human genetics, transcriptional and post-transcriptional gene regulation, epigenetics, genomics and bioinformatics. Students also have the opportunity to train in the application of computational and modeling approaches in genetics, epigenetics and genomics. Over 80 faculty are affiliated with G&E, including members of the Genetics Department, Penn Epigenetics Institute, and of many other basic science and clinical departments at UPenn, Children’s Hospital, and the Wistar Institute. G&E also shares many faculty with the Genomics and Computational Biology (GCB) graduate group, which places greater emphasis on computation and modeling, and students can select coursework and dual mentors from both programs. G&E benefits from the support of an NIH-funded Predoctoral Training Grant.

G&E students typically complete their degree in 5 - 6 years. Students complete coursework and a thesis proposal-based Preliminary Exam in year two. Years 3+ are spent primarily on thesis research, supplemented by a variety of seminars and other activities that promote scientific interactions and continued development of communication and other career-relevant skills.

Teaching and Outreach | Tom Kadesch Prize | Kaushal Family Awards | G&E Resources | G&E Committees

Teaching and Outreach

Teaching opportunities in Genetics

G&E students are not required to teach, but interested dissertation-stage students can gain teaching experience via Teaching Assistantships (TAs). Courses that need TAs include: Cell Biology (BIOM 600); Eukaryotic Gene Expression (BIOM 555); Epigenetics (CAMB 483); and Molecular Biology and Genetics (BIOL 221), which is an undergraduate course. Students also have opportunities to work with undergraduates in the lab through the Summer Undergraduate Internship Program (SUIP) or through individual lab initiatives. Senior students can also work as private tutors. Contact course directors, BGS (Compensation for Teaching Assistantships and Other Supplemental Activities), or the CAMB office for more information.

Outreach opportunities in Genetics

G&E students can participate in a variety of community outreach activities, including running a booth at the annual Philadelphia Science Festival or mentoring high school students in local science fairs through iPraxis.

Teaching and Outreach | Tom Kadesch Prize | Kaushal Family Awards | G&E Resources | G&E Committees

The Tom Kadesch Prize in Genetics

In 2011, the Department of Genetics established the "Tom Kadesch Prize in Genetics" to honor the legacy of our friend and colleague Dr. Tom Kadesch. Dr. Kadesch was a member of the Genetics department from 1984 until his death in 2011, and served as Interim Chairman for his final 4 years. He was not only an excellent scientist, but also a tremendously dedicated mentor, teacher and University citizen whose contributions inspired those around him. In his memory, with the help of many generous donors, we were able to set up an endowed fund that will support in perpetuity an annual award to "a graduate student demonstrating excellence in research achievement and citizenship".

Nominations for the Tom Kadesch Prize in Genetics are solicited each summer. This prize includes a $1000 monetary award and a public seminar to be presented to the Genetics Department. Eligible students can be members of any BGS graduate group. Students should be conducting research in the broad area of Genetics and should have received or anticipate receiving their PhD degree within a year of the application deadline.

Year Kadesch Prize Awardee Graduate Group Thesis Advisor
2011 Andrew Edmondson CAMB/GTV Dan Rader
2012 Ishmail Abdus-Saboor CAMB/G&E Meera Sundaram
2013 Maria Elena De Obaldia IGG Avinash Bhandoola
2014 Judy I-Ting Wang NGG Zhaolan Zhou
2015 Derek Oldridge GCB John Maris
2016 Celine Santiago CAMB/DSRB Greg Bashaw
2017 Philipp Mews CAMB/G&E Shelley Berger
2018 Katherine Palozola CAMB/G&E Kenneth Zaret
2019 co-winner Enrique Lin Shiao BMB Shelley Berger
2019 co-winner Camille Syrett CAMB/DSRB Montserrat Anguera

Teaching and Outreach | Tom Kadesch Prize | Kaushal Family Awards | G&E Resources | G&E Committees

Kaushal Family Awards in Genetics

The Kaushal Family Awards in Genetics were established in 2016 to recognize pre-doctoral and post-doctoral scholars for excellence in Genetics research as evidenced by a notable publication.

Nominations for the Kaushal Awards are solicited each summer. Each prize includes a $1000 monetary award and a public seminar to be presented to the Genetics Department. The awards are open to BGS students and PSOM postdocs working in any area of Genetics. Applicants may nominate one of their first-author (or co-first author) publications from the current or prior academic year.

Year Kaushal Family Award: Pre-Doc Kaushal Family Award: Post-Doc
2016 Sumeet Khetarpal (Rader lab) Yao Yao (Epstein lab)
2017 Alan Tang (Kahn lab) Daniel Bose (Berger lab)
2018 Yong Hoon Kim (Lazar lab) Takashi Akera (Lampson lab)
2019 Jeremy Grevet (Blobel lab) Hui Chen (Good lab)

Teaching and Outreach | Tom Kadesch Prize | Kaushal Family Awards | G&E Resources | G&E Committees

G&E Resources

Departments, Centers, and BGS Graduate Groups with Genetics Focus
Genetics Societies and Conferences

More CAMB-wide resources can be found here.

Teaching and Outreach | Tom Kadesch Prize | Kaushal Family Awards | G&E Resources | G&E Committees

 

G&E Committees

Admissions

Dr. John Murray (Chair)
Dr. Tom Jongens, Program Chair
Dr. Maureen Murphy
Dr. Golnaz Vahedi
Dr. Zhaolan (Joe) Zhou, Vice Program Chair

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Advising

Dr. Marisa Bartolomei
Dr. Roberto Bonasio
Dr. Douglas Epstein
Dr. Thomas Jongens, Program Chair
Dr. John Murray
Dr. David Raizen
Dr. Meera Sundaram
Dr. Golnaz Vahedi
Dr. Zhaolan Zhou,  Vice Program Chair

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Curriculum

Dr. Benjamin Voight - G&E Representative to CAMB Curriculum Committee
Caleb Radens - G&E Student Representative to CAMB Curriculum Committee

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Executive

Dr. Thomas Jongens, Program Chair
Dr. Douglas Epstein
Dr. Meera Sundaram

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Website

Dr. Arjun Raj
Dr. Meera Sundaram

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