GGMC Educational Webinar Series

Upcoming Webinar: Sept. 28, 2023

Join Us Each Month

The GGMC Educational Webinar Series, established and previously hosted by the International Hundred K+ Consortium (IHCC), has been expanded to include both consortiums within the GGMC organization. The series brings together leaders, educators, researchers, and professionals with all levels of expertise to share health sciences initiatives taking place in their respective fields and countries.

Each month’s webinar will feature new guest speakers offering novel insights into their fields. The virtual platform allows us to reach a global audience, particularly those in low-and middle income countries (LMICs) where our organization’s mission is heavily focused. This monthly series is free and open to anyone who wishes to participate.

Join us as we come together each month to share scientific ideas, best practices, challenges, lessons learned, funding opportunities, and more as we continue our mission of improving population health for all.

Upcoming Webinar

"From Generations Past to Future Health: Exploring the Evolution of Familial Disease to Today’s Possibility for Hereditary Cancer Prevention."

Sept. 28, 2023 | 11:00 AM EDT, 3:00 PM UTC

Dr. Oscar Lao and Dr. Brian Shirts

Dr. Oscar Lao completed his PhD in Health & Life Sciences at Universidad Pompeu Fabra in Barcelona in 2004. For the next ten years, he was involved in postdoctoral research in the Forensic Molecular Biology Department of Erasmus University Medical Centre.

He started his own team of Population Genomics at CNAG-CRG in 2015, was recognised as Junior PI by CRG in January 2018. In October 2020, he recieved a Cientifico Titular position at Institut de Biologia Evolutiva (IBE).

At his new position, his group addressed questions related to the genomic origin of a given individual, which are the demographic and selective factors that shaped the genetic variation present in a population, and how ultimately this variation influences and allows us to detect the individual risk in complex common diseases. In order to achieve these goals, they are actively working on developing new tools and machine learning algorithms for describing population substructure in the genome and understanding the biological implications of such structure, identifying the fingerprint of polygenic adaptation in complex phenotypes and evaluating the impact of archaic introgression in phenotypes of interest.

For Dr. Brian Shirts, his work in the University of Washington, Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology focuses on improving resources and communication for hereditary cancer prevention. In his clinical work as a molecular pathologist he noticed that many people get cancer because they do not know about hereditary cancer risk that runs in their families. His research to address this issue developed into ConnectMyVariant, a non-profit that leverages genetic, genealogy, and social networking technology to help people across the world find and connect with others who have the same pathogenic variants. This allows people to share preventions stories, find common ancestors, and encourage each other to let more relatives know about inherited cancer risk.

About the Talk

Modern family history resources include enormous databases of historical records, networks of DNA relationships linked with family trees, as well as various social networks that help people that use these resources find each other. This presentation will describe the ConnectMyVariant initiative, which started as a research project to determine the feasibility and acceptability of helping patients use these resources to expand cascade screening outreach and quickly grew into an independent non-profit organization. This initiative has a goal to help families identify all relatives at risk of hereditary cancer and notify them so that they can receive optimal cancer prevention.

Apply To Be a Speaker

Interested in speaking at an upcoming webinar? Use the form below to provide us with some information on your proposed topic and your availability to speak. 

Previous Webinars (2023)

July 27, 2023: “Reflections of a Biomedical Scientist on Four Continents.”

Presented by Dr. Juergen Reichardt

February 22, 2023: “Transforming Health in Singapore Through Precision Medicine”

Presented by Prof. Patrick Tan

Previous Webinars (2022)

December 15, 2022: “Nightingale Biomarker Profiling Across Large Biobanks”

Presented by Dr. Peter Wurtz and Dr. Jeffrey Barrett

IHCC Panel Discussion-“Genetics-Related COVID Cohorts”

September 30, 2022: “Qatar Biobank: A Pillar in Precision Medicine Initiative”

Presented by Dr. Nahla Afifi


July 28, 2022: “Creating a COVID-19 Cohort for Genomic and Proteomic Research”

Presented by Dr. Ricardo Verdugo

June 28, 2022: “Using the IHCC to Prevent Premature Death Around the Globe”

Presented by Dr. Reza Malekzadeh



May 23, 2022: “A Journey from Opium Research to the Opioid Cohort Consortium”

Presented by Dr. Mahdi Sheikh

April 26, 2022: “Terra and the Biomedical Data Ecosystem”

Presented by Dr. Geraldine Van Der Auwera

March 31, 2022: “Genomic Data Sharing for Global Health”

Presented by Dr. Peter Goodhand

February 28, 2022: “Diversity in Africa or Novel COVID Host Susceptibility Study”

Presented by: Dr. Michèle Ramsay and Dr. Andrew May


January 31, 2022: “Global Mental Health Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic”

Presented by: Dr. Sarah Bauermeister


We Want to Hear From You!

For questions or feedback regarding the GGMC Educational Webinar Series, or to suggest a speaker for a future meeting, please contact us.