Karen Elizabeth Hayden Miga is an American genomics expert who leads the Telomere-to-Telomore (T2T) consortium that seeks to fully complete the assembly of the human genome. She serves as an Assistant Professor in the Biomolecular Engineering Department at the University of California, Santa Cruz and is Associate Director at the UC Santa Cruz Genomics Institute. She was named as "One to Watch" in the 2020 Nature's 10. In 2012, Miga joined the laboratory of David Haussler at the University of California, Santa Cruz. At UCSC she combined computational and experimental approaches. There she leads the telomere-to-telomere (T2T) consortium, a community based effort that seeks to fully sequence and assemble the human genome. Her research efforts make use of long-read sequencing strategies. She makes use of the Oxford Nanopore Technologies MinION sequencer, which analyses DNA by detecting changes in current flow when DNA passes through nanopores in a membrane. Miga leads the Human Pangenome Production Center that seeks to contribute to the next human pangenome reference map through the creation of 350 T2T diploid genomes. This map will support the development of personalised therapeutics. In 2020 Miga was named as "One to Watch" in the 2020 Nature's 10.
Leading scientist known for working to complete the human genome will join UCSC faculty; Karen Miga is a longtime Genomics Institute researcher, recently named “one to watch” by the journal Nature.
14-Jun-2021 11:30:28 AM EDT
When the first complete human genome is published, it will be a landmark moment. It will be a huge technological achievement in that it will be the first time we will have demonstrated this new standard of genome completion and quality. It will also be a huge win for the broader basic and translational research communities, as we will have hundreds of millions of new, unexplored bases in a human genome to expand studies of disease association and cellular function. The next challenge is to make this completely routine and expand our study across hundreds if not thousands of people.