Mark D. Adams, Ph.D. Joins J. Craig Venter Institute as Scientific Director

Press Release

Mark D. Adams, Ph.D. Joins J. Craig Venter Institute as Scientific Director

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ROCKVILLE, MD and SAN DIEGO, CA — July 12, 2011 — The J. Craig Venter Institute (JCVI) today announced that Mark D. Adams, Ph.D. has joined the organization as Scientific Director effective immediately. Adams will be responsible for leading and directing all research efforts on both the Rockville, Maryland and San Diego, California campuses of the JCVI. He will be based in the San Diego facility.

"I am thrilled to have Mark back on the team as he is one of the most impressive scientists and leaders with whom I have had the pleasure to work throughout my career. Mark has been a key contributor to many of the seminal research and scientific papers in genomics including the first papers on Expressed Sequence Tags (ESTs), the sequence of the fruit fly and the first draft of the human genome. I look forward to having him help lead and expand the future research direction for JCVI," said Dr. Venter.

Adams comes to JCVI most recently from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio where he worked from 2003 to 2011 as an Associate Professor in the Department of Genetics. While at Case Western, Adams worked on a variety of genomic research fronts, including multi-drug antibiotic resistance in Acinetobacter baumannii. While there he was also the director of the Genomics Core Facility.

Prior to Case Western, Adams worked at Celera Genomics with Dr. Venter from 1998 to 2003, where he was first the Vice-President for Genome Programs and then Vice-President of Bioinformatics. He was one of the first employees at Celera and was responsible for leading the sequencing team on their historic quest to sequence the first human genome, the fruit fly genome, and the mouse and rat genomes.

Adams and other key personnel came to Celera with Dr. Venter from The Institute for Genomic Research (TIGR). He joined TIGR in 1992 when the organization was founded and was a key leader there as DNA Sequencing Facility Director, Assistant Investigator and Investigator and Director, Department of Eukaryotic Genomics.

In 1990, Adams began his career with Dr. Venter when he joined Venter's laboratory at the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke at the National Institutes of Health as a Postdoctoral fellow in the Section of Receptor Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. Adams was the lead researcher and first author on the landmark EST paper published in 1991 in which the team found nearly 400 new human genes using this rapid gene discovery tool.

Adams received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Chemistry in 1984 from Warren Wilson College in North Carolina and his Ph.D. in Biological Chemistry in 1990 from the University of Michigan.

About the J. Craig Venter Institute (JCVI)

The JCVI is a not-for-profit research institute in Rockville, MD and San Diego, CA dedicated to the advancement of the science of genomics; the understanding of its implications for society; and communication of those results to the scientific community, the public, and policymakers. Founded by J. Craig Venter, Ph.D., the JCVI is home to approximately 350 scientists and staff with expertise in human and evolutionary biology, genetics, bioinformatics/informatics, information technology, high-throughput DNA sequencing, genomic and environmental policy research, and public education in science and science policy. The legacy organizations of the JCVI are: The Institute for Genomic Research (TIGR), The Center for the Advancement of Genomics (TCAG), the Institute for Biological Energy Alternatives (IBEA), the Joint Technology Center (JTC), and the J. Craig Venter Science Foundation. The JCVI is a 501 (c)(3) organization. For additional information, please visit

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