The American Society of Human Genetics (ASHG) has named Kári Stefánsson, MD, founder of deCODE Genetics, the 2017 recipient of the annual William Allan Award. The award, which recognizes a scientist for substantial and far-reaching scientific contributions of human genetics, was established in 1961 in memory of William Allan, MD (1181-1943), a pioneer in the field of genetics. Dr. Kári Stefánsson will receive his award on 18 October in Orlando Florida.
In 1996, Dr. Stefánsson founded deCODE Genetics with the vision of a large-scale population study in Iceland, a country with a relatively small, isolated, and homogenous population; a high-quality healthcare system; and extensive genealogical records, as stated in the society's press release. Through active engagement with the Icelandic population, deCODE has now collected DNA samples from more than 160,000 individuals and contributed greatly to public education about genetics in the country. Their work has inspired similar large-scale studies in other countries, including the UK Biobank and the United States’ All of Us initiative.
Apart from being CEO of deCODE, Dr. Kári Stefánsson is also a professor at the University of Iceland's Faculty of Medicine. Dr. Stefánsson has received numerous awards for his work, including the Sackler Lecture at MIT (2009), the European Society of Human Genetics Award (2009), the American Alzheimer’s Association’s Inge Grundke-Iqbal Award (2014), and the Federation of European Biomedical Societies’ Sir Hans Krebs Medal (2016). He has published more than 500 articles in the scientific literature.
Founded in 1948, the American Society of Human Genetics is the primary professional membership organization for human genetics specialists worldwide. Its nearly 8,000 members include researchers, academicians, clinicians, laboratory practice professionals, genetic counselors, nurses, and others with an interest in human genetics.
Wednesday, August 9, 2017 - 09:30