Illumina’s Inaugural Genomics Forum 2022

3 October 2022

Louisa Ghevaert was delighted to attend Illumina’s inaugural Genomics Forum in San Diego, USA, from 28 September – 1 October 2022. This groundbreaking event gathered together global leaders from across the genomics, healthcare, scientific, technology, data and policy sectors to advance and improve genomic healthcare, with spotlight speeches by former US President Barack Obama and Bill Gates. This four-day event also included sessions with over 60 leading world experts and genetic advocates with insight into genomics’ role for more personalized, preemptive, and predictive healthcare.

Illumina’s inaugural Genomics Forum 2022

Illumina’s inaugural Genomics Forum 2022 delivered insight into the latest innovations and technology to inform and improve human health, as well as clinical research and trials involving genomics. In addition, it addressed how genomics are being deployed in clinical practice in the fight against cancer and genetic, rare and infectious diseases. Moreover, Illumina updated its gene sequencing technology roadmap for using genomics to improve standard of care in clinical practice, reproductive health and infectious diseases.

Former US President Barack Obama delivered an inspiring spotlight speech on 28 September 2022 on how we can do better in advancing healthcare and genomics and how change starts with community. This was followed by a further spotlight speech by Bill Gates on 30 September 2022 who set out his vision for innovation and the role of genomics in making the world healthier and free from pandemics.

Images: Former US President Barack Obama, scientist at Broad Institute Sonia Vallabh developing preventive drugs for prion disease, Bill Gates.

Illumina’s inaugural Genomics Forum 2022 was a truly international event, with an impressive contingency of expert speakers from the UK, including: (1) Chris Wigley, CEO of Genomics England, (2) Dr. David Bick, Principal Clinician for the Newborn Genomes Programme at Genomics England, (3) Sir Rory Collins, Principal Investigator of UK Biobank and (4) Sir Andrew Whitty CEO of UnitedHealth Group.

Images: Chris Wigley CEO of Genomics England, Louisa Ghevaert CEO Louisa Ghevaert Associates, Dr. David Bick Principal Clinician for the Newborn Genomes Programme at Genomics England. Scientist Mei Baker, Sir Rory Collins Principal Investigator of UK Biobank.

Other speakers at Illumina’s inaugural Genomics Forum 2022 included (1) Nobel Laureate Frances Arnold, who received the Nobel Prize in Chemistry (2018) and was recently appointed Co-Chair of the Presidential Council of Advisors for Science and Technology (PCAST) by US President Joe Biden, (2) Francis deSouza, President and CEO of Illumina, (3) Catalina Lopez-Correa, Chief Scientific Officer at Genome Canada, (4) Eric Topol, Founder and Director of the Scripps Research Translational Institute, Professor, Molecular Medicine, and Executive Vice-President of Scripps Research and one of the top 10 most cited researchers in medicine, (5) former U.S. Food and Drug Administration head Scott Gottlieb and (6) 23&me co-founder Anne Wojcicki.

The diverse nature of Illumina’s inaugural Genomics Forum 2022 also included a personal account by genetic advocate and former world number one tennis player Chris Evert, who sought out genetic testing, counseling, and treatment to lower her risk of ovarian cancer from Stage 3 or 4 to Stage 1 after learning of her sister’s own diagnosis. This was followed by a speech by Danielle Hicks, Chief Patient Officer at GO2 Foundation for Lung Cancer, who had hands-on experience as a caregiver to her mother who suffered with lung cancer and who gave insight into the disease, treatments and the emotional and physical experience, as well as experience through survivorship.

Moreover, Ilumina’s inaugural Genomics Forum 2022 attended by 2,500 people provided an important platform to share real-world data, meet and network with the world’s leading innovators across the genomic and healthcare ecosystem and learn more about the latest technology that will transform the standard of care.

For more information about genomic, fertility, family and wider law, policy and governance contact Louisa Ghevaert by email or by telephone +44 (0)20 7965 8399.


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