Richard Gibbs on Interactions with Craig Venter
  Richard Gibbs     Biography    
Recorded: 14 May 2004

Well, Craig was always a lively character. So I met with Craig on this trip around Europe. I listened to him talk; the same talk five days in a row and show all these slides. And by the fifth day I was starting to look at all the details on his slides. At one stage he showed a slide about how he sequenced a gene in one run with these sequencing instruments. I looked at his slide and I counted the little arrows and there were 28 little arrows. I knew that there were only 24 lanes, 24 samples that you could put on the machine. So I said to him afterwards, you know, Craig, there are 28 arrows there. I mean there are 24 samples per machine. So how did you manage to run that gene in one run like you said you would. And he said, well, we got all the data in one run. But we just added a few more reads afterwards. And he said it straight off so it must be true.

It’s intense to be on the road and listen to a talk five times in five days. But he had to listen to my talk too, so we all suffered.

Richard A. Gibbs is currently the Director of the Human Genome Sequencing Center at Baylor College of Medicine (BCM) and the Wofford Cain Professor in the Department of Molecular and Human Genetics. He received a B.Sc. (Hons) in 1979 and a Ph.D. in Genetics and Radiation Biology in 1985 at the University of Melbourne in Australia. In 1990 he completed a postdoctoral fellowship at Houston’s Baylor College of Medicine, studying the molecular basis of human X-linked diseases and developing technologies for rapid genetic analysis. He developed several fundamental technologies for nucleic acid analysis. In 1991, he joined the BCM faculty and played a key role in the early planning and development phases of the Human Genome Project. In 1996, he established the BCM Human Genome Sequencing Center when Baylor was chosen as one of six programs to complete the final phase of the Human Genome Project. Dr. Gibbs has also made significant contributions to the deciphering of the fly, mouse, dictyostelium, and rat genomes. Among the numerous awards and honors received by Dr. Gibbs, he was awarded the Michael E. DeBakey, M.D., Excellence in Research Award in 2000.