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Association for Molecular Pathology

Webinars in 2011

The Role of c-KIT Mutation Screening in GIST, Melanoma, AML and Systemic Mastocytosis
September 29, 2011

Support generously provided by



Presenter: Christopher L. Corless, MD, PhD, Oregon Health & Science University, Portland, OR
Host: Tina Edmonston, MD, Cooper University Medical Center, Camden, NJ
Contact Hours: 1.0
Level of Instruction: Intermediate

Description: This webinar will review the spectrum of c-KIT mutations and the biological role of activated KIT in number of tumor types. Methods for detecting the mutations will be discussed along with their clinical significance in relation to KIT kinase inhibitors.

Learning Objectives:
To understand the different types of c-KIT mutations occurring in various tumors.
To learn about different methodologies that can be used to detect the mutations.
To appreciate the clinical impact of c-KIT genotyping in the era of KIT kinase inhibitor therapy.

Clinical Sequencing by Sanger: State of the Art in a Next-Gen World
August 10, 2011

Presenter: Elaine Lyon, PhD, University of Utah / ARUP Laboratories, Salt Lake City, UT
Host: Karen Weck, MD, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC
Level of Instruction: Intermediate
Contact Hours: 1.0

Although technical advances of "next generation" platforms allow for high throughput processing, Sanger sequencing is considered a gold standard and will continue to be an important part of clinical molecular diagnostics. Applications center on single gene disorders, targeted somatic mutation detection and viral genotyping and resistance testing. Familiarity with individual genes and diseases is needed for proper assay design. For clinical purposes, robust sequencing assays are essential for providing accurate results with efficient turn-around times. While regions of genes such as polynucleotide tracts or common insertions/deletions may be difficult to sequence, primer design and proper alignments can ensure complete coverage. Workflow processes may provide efficiencies in cost and time savings. This seminar will present examples and discuss practical approaches in addressing these issues in a clinical setting.

Learning Objectives:
Describe assay design considerations for complete coverage of regions to be interrogated
Discuss validation approaches to establish performance characteristics and ensure test accuracy and robustness
List challenges in and solutions for complex data analysis and interpretation
Discuss workflow measures for implementing efficient Sanger sequencing assays into the clinical laboratory

Genetics of Schizophrenia: Clinical and Diagnostic Implications
July 20, 2011

Presenter: Linda M. Brzustowicz, MD, UMDNJ - Rutgers University, Piscataway, New Jersey
Host: Amrik Sohota, PhD, UMDNJ - Rutgers University, Piscataway, New Jersey
Level of Instruction: Basic
Contact Hours: 1.0

Description: This webinar will review the current understanding of the genetics of schizophrenia, including microdeletion syndromes which present significant clinical management implications for affected individuals.

Learning Objectives:
Describe heritability of schizophrenia and models for disease susceptibility
Identify genetic risk factors for schizophrenia
Discuss clinical and diagnostic implications of the 22q11.2 deletion syndrome
Summarize prospects for personalized medicine approaches in schizophrenia

Biomarkers of Prognosis in Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia
June 16, 2011

Support generously provided by


Presenter: Lynne V. Abruzzo, MD, University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX
Host: Y. Lynn Wang, MD, PhD, Weill Cornell Medical College / NY Presbyterian Hospital, New York, New York
Level of Instruction: Intermediate

Description: Chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), the most common leukemia in adults in the Western hemisphere, accounts for ~25% of all leukemia in the United States. The clinical course of CLL is heterogeneous and difficult to predict. Some patients die rapidly despite aggressive therapy, while others survive for many years and never require therapy. A wide variety of factors have been used to predict prognosis. While useful, traditional prognostic markers, such as clinical stage and bone marrow histology, have proven insufficient to account for the heterogeneity of the clinical behavior of CLL, especially for patients with early stage disease. Over the past decade, new cellular and molecular biomarkers of prognosis in CLL have been identified. Among the most promising markers are cytogenetic abnormalities, the somatic mutation status of the immunoglobulin heavy chain variable region genes, and the expression of ZAP70 protein. Although many new prognostic markers have been proposed, their clinical utility awaits validation in prospective clinical trials.

Learning Objectives:
Summarize an overview of the clinical, morphologic, and immunophenotypic features of CLL,
Describe traditional and new prognostic markers of CLL, and
Discuss the impact of new biomarkers on the diagnosis and prognosis of CLL.

Preventing "Identity Theft" at a Biobank through Analytical and Functional Quality Control
May 25, 2011

Presenter: Andrew Brooks, PhD, UMDNJ -Rutgers University, Piscataway, NJ
Host: Amrik Sahota, PhD, UMDNJ -Rutgers University, Piscataway, NJ
Contact Hours: 1.0 / Intermediate

Level of Instruction: Intermediate; some basic knowledge of biobanking is helpful.

Description: The scientific challenges that biobanks currently face is only half of the problem. The integration of both analytical and functional quality control for the design, creation and implementation of both small and large collections is of paramount importance. This workshop will address the practical operational issues from a scientific and fiscal perspective when creating, transitioning and managing a comprehensive quality control program. Tools will be provided to help scientists create new collections as well as manage existing collections ensuring that the science and sample quality exceeds industry standards. The suggested audience for this webinar can include: molecular lab directors, technologists, Pathology trainees, researchers, laboratory supervisor/managers and others interested in this topic.

The suggested audience for this webinar includes: Medical Directors, Laboratory Supervisors/Managers, Medical Technologists, Trainees in Molecular Pathology, Researchers and others interested in this topic.

Educational Objectives:
Describe how to evaluate and implement new biobanking quality control technologies
Discuss how to build a comprehensive quality control program for biobanking services
Explain when and how to integrate new technology with fiscal responsibility
Describe how to quality control storage environments to balance cost vs. sample stability
Discuss how to add biomaterial quality control services to an existing service infrastructure

Molecular Testing for BK Polyomavirus-Associated Nephropathy
April 27, 2011

Support generously provided by

Presenter: Benjamin A. Pinsky, MD, PhD, Stanford University, Palo Alto, CA
Host: Melinda Poulter, PhD, D(ABMM), University of Virginia Health System, Charlottesville, VA

Description: BK Polyomavirus-Associated Nephropathy or PVAN is an important cause of graft dysfunction and loss in renal transplant recipients. Molecular assays for the identification of BK nucleic acids in urine and plasma have emerged as critical tools for the early diagnosis and prevention of this disease. This webinar will cover the basic virology of BK polyomavirus, review the histological changes found in PVAN, and discuss in detail the application and utility of BK molecular diagnostics.

Learning Objectives:
Become familiar with the basic virology of BK.
Recognize the challenges of histological diagnosis of PVAN.
Understand the role of BK molecular testing in renal transplant recipients

Rapid Detection and Identification of Mycobacteria with real-time PCR
January 24, 2011

Presenter: Niaz Banaei, MD, Stanford University Medical Center, Palo Alto, CA
Host: Janice Matthews-Greer, PhD, D(ABMM), Louisiana State University HSC, Shreveport, LA

Description: Mycobacteria are important agents of infection in humans. In this webinar I will describe a basic algorithm employing multiplex real-time PCR for rapid detection and identification of clinically important Mycobacteria from clinical specimen and microbiological culture.

Learning objectives:
Understand the importance of rapid Mycobacterial detection and identification in the laboratory
Understand the role of real time PCR for detection of Mycobacterium tuerculosis in clinical specimens
Understand the use of multiplexed, real time PCR for identification and speciation of mycobacteria
Understand the role of sequencing for identification of Mycobacteria