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Jan Korbel

Professional carreer

Jan Korbel

Jan Korbel leads a research group at EMBL Heidelberg since 2008. He was awarded his PhD from EMBL Heidelberg/Humboldt University, Berlin in 2005 and undertook postdoctoral research at Yale University, USA from 2005-2007. The research in Jan‘s group combines experimental and computational approaches for studying the extent, functional impact and mutational origins of genetic variation, with a focus on genomic structural variation in the germline and in cancer. Structural variants, including copy-number variants, inversions, and translocations, are responsible for most of the genetic variation in the human genome. Recent advances in massively parallel DNA sequencing enable dissecting the impact of this form of variation on disease mechanisms, including on tumorigenesis. Jan Korbel is involved in three cancer genome projects participating in the International Cancer Genome Consortium (ICGC), including the ICGC pediatric brain tumor project, in which he recently described a crucial role of catastrophic genome rearrangements in childhood medulloblastoma development. As a co-chair of the Structural Variation Analysis group of the 1000 Genomes Project he is, furthermore, in charge of the analysis of structural variants identified in the germline of several thousand individuals.