1st GHGA Annual Meeting

One year after being funded, GHGA celebrated its first anniversary with a bunch of new firsts. The first GHGA Annual Meeting took place in a hybrid format from 26-28th of October. Under strict hygiene regulations including 3G (with PCR tests).

On the first day, the whole GHGA Team met in-person - for the first time as most people were hired during the pandemic! We planned a new roadmap for the different workstreams with a hackathon and celebrated the first milestones reached. In the evening the first GHGA Pub Quiz took place - a tradition worth keeping!

The second day saw GHGA PIs and members join in Heidelberg, or dial-in via Zoom to discuss technical developments around GHGA. Sven Nahnsen and Stephan Ossowski presented on nf-core and long read sequencing methods, while Leon Kuchenbecker and Thomas Ulas introduced CoGDat and CoFGen, respectively - two COVID-19 genomics data portals developed in association with GHGA. 

The highlight of the day was GHGA's first public event: our Mini-symposium “Unlocking the Power of Genomic Medicine via FAIR Data Sharing”. After an introduction to GHGA by Oliver Stegle, Mark Daly from the University of Helsinki and the Broad Institute gave the keynote lecture on “Data sharing in large scale biobanks”. Talks on scalable genomics programs in cancer (Michael Berger), data sharing in rare disease genomics (Anne O'Donnell-Luria), ethical and legal policy challenges (Pascal Borry) and the DKFZ/NCT/DKTK MASTER program (Stefan Fröhling) rounded the whole event off. 219 participants joined the symposium on Zoom - a great success and a big step in our effort to spread the word. All talks can be found on the GHGA Youtube channel.

On the concluding day, GHGA members discussed the planned milestones and products for 2022 based on the plans laid out during the Team Day. Lively discussions between the workstreams ensured valuable input, which the team is now working on to incorporate.