Massively parallel assessment of the copy number and primary sequence of nucleic acids using sequence specific hybridization of tagged and affixed oligonucleotides has allowed for unprecedented analysis of gene expression and DMA sequence variation (Hoheisel, 2006). The amount and complexity of data that can be collected using this technology will place increasing technical demands on neuroscience investigators. To facilitate use of genomics tools by NINDS-funded investigators we are partnering with other members of the UNC genomics community. The Neuroscience Center Genomics and Bioinformatics Core has lead the UNC campus as an early adopter of genomics technology with the early acquisition of an Affymetrix GeneChip station with NINDS support. Subsequently, the Neuroscience Center, Carolina Center for Genome Sciences (CCGS), Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center (LCCC), and the UNC Department of Genetics have made complementary efforts to establish the infrastructure for additional genomic analysis. Dr. Kirk Wilhelmsen, a member of each of these Centers, both the Departments of Neurology and Genetics, as well as faculty advisor for both the CCGS genotyping and sequencing cores, has been instrumental in developing genomic infrastructure at UNC since his arrival three years ago. Dr. Chuck Perou has led the LCCC genomics efforts and developed bioinformatics infrastructure for transcriptional profiling (for example see the LCCC microarray databases at and During the last twelve months Dr. Wilhelmsen has organized and arranged funding for four equipment upgrades to the Core 1 Affymetrix platform including: an upgrade to allow scanning of the next generation of chips;acquisitions of a second fluidic workstation and an autoloader for the scanner to facilitate continuous data acquisition for large sets of chips;and a upgrade to so that that the platform can scan in four colors which is necessary for custom targeted genotyping panels (MIPS) and comparative genomic hybridization. His lab has determined more than 240 million genotypes for human neurodegenerative disease studies using Affymetrix 500K chips and 2.6 million genotypes using Affymetrix MIPS technology. These upgrades and expansion of the facilities were done while maintaining the ongoing support of transcriptional profiling (an average of 350 samples/per year) in support of NINDS-funded and other neuroscience investigators, and other NIH funded scientists at UNC that use the core. Dr Wilhelmsen's role as Core 1 director and Dr. Perou's role as consultant will facilitate integration of Core 1 with other genomics activity on campus to reduce redundancy and help maintain best practices.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
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National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke Initial Review Group (NSD)
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