Senator Mikulski Notes Exciting Endeavors at ATRF

By Andrea Frydl and Kristine Jones, Guest Writers, and Ken Michaels, Staff Writer
A group of people sitting around a table.

The tour group takes a break for conversation at the ATRF. From Left: Barry Gause, M.D., Dave Bufter, Atsuo Kuki, Ph.D., Harold Varmus, M.D., and Senator Barbara Mikulski.

By Andrea Frydl and Kristine Jones, Guest Writers, and Ken Michaels, Staff Writer

On October 10, U.S. Senator Barbara Mikulski and Congressman Chris Van Hollen, both from Maryland, toured the Advanced Technology Research Facility (ATRF), accompanied by NCI Director Harold Varmus, Chief Technology Officer Atsuo Kuki, and other FNL leaders.

Mikulski toured several Maryland scientific and biotechnology organizations recently, and the ATRF was on her list of places to visit.

Mikulski and Van Hollen kicked off the afternoon’s event by attending an informal briefing with NCI leadership to discuss the ATRF as it relates to the Frederick National Laboratory. Mikulski light-heartedly said that she was there to “hear about what NCI was doing up in Frederick, see a little bit of it, not get a Ph.D.”

Following a tour, Mikulski repeatedly praised the facility and noted that “there are some very exciting endeavors taking place here that the American public will be excited to hear about.”  She added that she wants to help “you, the scientists, do what you do best.” 

CCR Sequencing Facility Moves from Gaithersburg

The CCR Sequencing Facility (CCR-SF), a high-throughput sequencing core laboratory established by the Center for Cancer Research (CCR), moved from the Advanced Technology Center (ATC) in Gaithersburg, Md., to the ATRF in Frederick, Md., in October. The CCR-SF offers sequencing services on both the Illumina and Pacific Biosciences sequencing platforms.  These two platforms have complementary strengths and can be used separately or in a combined approach to answer many genomics questions.

The CCR-SF provides many sequencing applications, some of which are whole-genome sequencing, exome and transcriptome sequencing, targeted amplicon resequencing, ChIP-seq, and sequencing complex repeats, secondary structures, and AT and GC-rich sections of DNA. 

Andrea Frydl is a public affairs specialist in the Office of Scientific Operations, FNL. Kristine Jones is an associate scientist in the CCR Sequencing Facility.