In The Field

At Society of Developmental Biology 2008: “What the heck is a YFome?”

The opening symposium for the 67th annual Society of Developmental Biology meeting was held in the Irvine Hall on the University of Pennsylvania campus in Philadelphia. The cavernous auditorium is quite ornate with a massive pipe organ lining the front wall and arresting décor and proportions. Still more arresting was a word several slides into a talk on development and genomics by Joseph Ecker of The Salk Institue. He presented a list of ‘ome words like Proteome (cataloguing proteins), Promoterome (developing lists of DNA promoters), Phenome (cataloguing of phenotypes), Orfeome (catalogue of open reading frames), and more. But several in the hall were mumbling “What the heck is a YFome?” Before moving on to the next slide, Ecker shed some light on the mystery. Since someone invariably accuses him of missing some area of study he said, he added “Your Favourite ‘Ome.”

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