Frontline Festival London brings genomics to the fore

Last week saw a great buzz created in London with the arrival of the Festival of Genomics and several exciting announcements about the 100,000 Genomes Project

On a cold winter’s morning in January, the Genomics Education Programme joined with other exhibitors and attendees to welcome the start of the first Festival of Genomics in London. Already established in Boston and California, the London festival represents the opportunity to encourage dialogue between all those already working in the genomics arena within the UK and Europe.

The event kicked off on Tuesday 19th January with several workshops covering a range of topics including bioinformatics, next generation sequencing and diagnostic genetics and genomics.

Day 1: 20th January

The main conference event started early in the morning, with plenary speeches from Chief Medical Officer Dame Sally Davis, George Freeman MP, Sir John Burn and Sir John Chisholm from Genomics England. Dame Sally shared a very personal story to start the conference on the subject of genomic medicine saving lives in the future. George Freeman, MP, added that through genomic medicine we are clearing the way for genomic-informed treatment to come through the system. In another exciting announcement, he revealed that Genomics England will receive a further £250M funding over 5 years to continue their pioneering work.

Exhibition stand

The Genomics Education Programme stand was visited by a steady stream of interested scientists and those already working in the field of genomics throughout the festival. A number of excellent connections were made, particularly within the NHS – helping us to raise awareness of the programme throughout the organisation.

Day 2: 21st January

Day two started with a plenary session covering genomic medicine, personalised healthcare, and genomics around the world, with speakers from the growing genomics industry and the Institute of Cancer Research. The overall programme for day two featured cancer data analysis, drug development and genomic testing themes.

Additional genomics activity

The festival also marked the public launch of cancer recruitment to the 100,000 Genome Project, with announcements from Dame Sally and Life Sciences Minister George Freeman MP covering the additional Genomics England funding.

Colleagues from Leicester (East of England NHS GMC) provided stellar media coverage on the BBC and other outlets, and Professor Sue Hill posted a new blog to highlight the pioneering work taking place in the NHS GMCs. Read more of Sue’s blog here.

A big thank you to everyone who visited our stand to learn more about us. If you have any follow up questions or queries for the team please get in touch.