$30,000 gift will support bioinformatics and computational genomics.
A gift to the Greenwood Genetic Center Foundation by Dr. Walt Patterson, Professor Emeritus of Mathematics, Lander University, has established the Susan R. Patterson Professional Development Award in Bioinformatics & Computational Genomics in memory of his wife, Susan. The award serves to honor and perpetuate her lifelong devotion to the field of education in mathematics. Susan was also passionate about supporting families and children faced with genetic disorders who are served by GGC.
Bioinformatics and computational genomics is a growing field that merges biology, mathematics and computer science to interpret genetic data. These specialized professionals support researchers and clinicians at GGC by studying the impact of genetic changes and developing algorithms to sift through the large amounts of genetic data to identify which DNA changes are related to the patient's condition. These skills are valuable in both diagnostic and research work at GGC.
The award will support ongoing professional education and development for faculty and staff at GGC who are involved in bioinformatics work.
"With the vast amounts of data generated by current genetic testing methodologies, bioinformatics is a critical component of our work – to help us better understand the meaning of the genetic changes we identify in our patients," said Dr. Steve Skinner, Director of GGC. "We are grateful to Dr. Patterson for helping us grow and expand in this important area, and know that this award will enhance our capabilities and allow us to more efficiently serve our patients with cutting-edge research and technologies."
"Susan Patterson had a heart for GGC's mission, the patients we serve, and in sustaining educational opportunities," said Victoria Hann, Executive Director, GGC Foundation. "It is truly an honor to be entrusted with preserving her legacy through her husband's generous spirit in establishing this award."