International Structural Genomics Initiative Advances

Release Date:
John Norvell, NIGMS
(301) 594-0533

Scientists from nine countries gathered recently at the First International Structural Genomics Meeting to discuss worldwide collaboration in structural genomics. The meeting was held April 4-6, 2000, near Cambridge, U.K., and was cosponsored by the National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS) and the U.K.-based medical research charity Wellcome Trust.

Participants discussed goals of the effort; necessary resources; and policies on data release and deposition, publication, intellectual property, and cooperation with industry. Several task forces will further investigate these issues. The agreement from the meeting, its agenda, and the roster of participants are available online at /news/meetings/pages/hinxton.aspx.

Worldwide momentum for the effort is growing rapidly. Several countries, including the U.K., Japan, France, Germany, Italy, Israel, and Canada, also plan national programs to support structural genomics. Already, three international meetings are scheduled within the next year:

  • The Workshop on International Cooperation in Structural Genomics sponsored by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, in Florence, Italy, June 8-9, 2000.

  • The International Conference on Structural Genomics 2000 in Yokohama, Japan, November 2-5, 2000. For more information, see

  • The Second International Structural Genomics Meeting in Airlie, VA, April 4-6, 2001.

NIGMS is spearheading U.S. participation and is providing both organizational and financial support. In September, NIGMS will award its first large-scale grants for structural genomics. These grants will support four to six research centers, each for up to $3 million, to develop high-throughput strategies for every step in structural genomics, including target selection, sample preparation, structure determination, and data analysis.

For more information about these grants or other elements of the NIGMS structural genomics initiative, see /Ini‚Äčtiatives/PSI.