Gene-Editing and Advancing Agricultural Development in the 21st Century
Stanford Libraries is pleased to present the 2018 Dr. Sam-Chung Hsieh Memorial Lecture featuring Dan Voytas on Gene-Editing and Advancing Agricultural Development in the 21st Century.Dr. Voytas, Professor of Genetics, Cell Biology, and Development at the University of Minnesota, co-inventor of TALEN gene-editing technology, and Chief Technology Officer of Calyxt, will discuss the rapid advancement of plant gene-editing and its implications for global agriculture. A leading expert on plant genetics and an entrepreneur whose company went public in 2017, Dr. Voytas will examine the role that technologies such as TALEN and CRISPR are having in the development of healthier food and non-GMO plants with agriculturally advantageous traits.Specializing in molecular biology and genetics, Dr. Voytas’ research focuses on genome modification using nucleases that recognize specific DNA sequences. In 2005, he co-founded the Zinc Finger Consortium, a group of academic scientists focused on creating open-source platforms for engineering zinc finger nucleases for targeted mutagenesis. His laboratory developed a superior class of sequence-specific nucleases – Transcription Activator-Like Effector Nucleases (TALENs) – which were heralded by Science magazine as one of the top ten scientific breakthroughs of 2012. Using Cas9/CRISPR-based nucleases, Dr. Voytas’ lab is currently optimizing methods for efficiently making targeted genome modifications in a variety of plant species. Recent advances in Dr. Voytas’s lab include the use of geminivirus replicons to dramatically increase the frequency of precise genome modifications in multiple plant species.Dr. Voytas graduated from Harvard College in 1984 and received his Ph.D. from Harvard Medical School in 1990. He conducted postdoctoral research at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine where he was a fellow of the Life Science Research Foundation. Prior to joining the University of Minnesota, Dr. Voytas was a professor at Iowa State University (1992-2008). Dr. Voytas is an elected Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.---------------------------------------------------------------------------The family of Dr. Sam-Chung Hsieh donated his personal archive to the Stanford Libraries' Special Collections and endowed the Dr. Sam-Chung Hsieh Memorial Lecture series to honor his legacy and to inspire future generations. Dr. Sam-Chung Hsieh (1919-2004) was former Governor of the Central Bank in Taiwan. During his tenure, he was responsible for the world's largest foreign exchange reserves, and was widely recognized for achieving stability and economic growth. In his long and distinguished career as economist and development specialist, he held key positions in multilateral institutions including the Asian Development Bank, where as founding Director, he was instrumental in advancing the green revolution and in the transformation of rural Asia. He earned an international reputation for his diplomacy and leadership in building infrastructure and improving living standards for people throughout Asia. As Secretary-General of the Joint Commission on Rural Reconstruction in Taiwan and later as Chairman of Taiwan's National Development Bank, he led efforts which sparked the "Taiwan Miracle." He also served as Chairman of Chung-Hua Institution for Economic Research, Taiwan's premier research institution, and as Chairman of ChinaTrust Bank, and the Industrial Bank of Taiwan. He was professor at National Taiwan University and visiting professor at the Cornell University-University of the Philippines joint programs.