Gene Myers

Thursday, 14 September 2017 at 11:00 | Large Operon, EMBL Heidelberg

Gene Myers | Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics (DE)

Host: Stefano De Renzis, Developmental Biology Unit


Computational Optics and Bioimage Informatics

We present examples of projects aimed at digitising light microscope data sets using advance AI techniques (bioimage informatics). We also report on two microscopes we are building, that improve resolution by making multiple observations of a volume and from them compute a better reconstruction of the object under observation (computational optics).


In the 1980s, Gene Myers developed many efficient algorithms for sequence comparison and search, where BLAST and suffix arrays are his best known results in this arena. further developed the overlap-layout-consensus paradigm for DNA sequencing, ultimately perfecting the string graph approach used at Celera to successfully assemble the fly, human, and mouse genomes.  He and Jim Weber were the first to propose the paired-end whole genome shotgun sequencing of the human genome, the paradigm by which most genomes are sequenced today.  In the last decade, he has focused on the construction of novel microscopes and software for building single cell expression atlases across developmental epochs.

Myers has been a professor at U of Arizona and UC Berkeley, a vice president at Celera Genomics, and a group leader for HHMI and the Max-Planck Society. He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering, USA, the National Academy of Germany, and won the ACM Kannellakis Prize in 2002.

Research Statement

We are pursuing the idea that great microscopes and informatics will allow us to build digital models of cells, tissues, and organisms through time with information about the genetic and proteomic states of each cell layered there on. The belief is that these atlases combined with optical observations of labeled entities will accelerate the life sciences by allowing us to visualize these systems from any vantage point and as a system.