CRISPR and Beyond: Perturbations at Scale to Understand Genomes (Virtual Conference)

22–25 September 2020

Wellcome Genome Campus, UK

Exploring methods to modulate the genome at scale


Owing to the ongoing situation with covid-19, this event will be organised as a virtual conference.

We are pleased to announce our second conference on genetic perturbations at scale. The development of CRISPR/Cas-based technologies and DNA synthesis make it possible to modulate genomes with relative ease. These tools can help us understand how genetic variation influences phenotype and thereby answer long-standing questions in biology that impact human health, laying the foundations for precision medicine for heritable diseases and cancer treatment.

This rapid advancement in gene-editing technology enables us to begin to understand the functional implications of natural and disease-related human genetic variation. This year’s programme will cover approaches that modulate the genome and its context at scale, from single nucleotides and genes to hundreds of growth environments.

We will discuss (i) assays that focus on individual nucleotides in coding and non-coding regions to understand the effects of single mutations; (ii)  focused- and genome-wide randomization methods that assess the influence of changing sequence structure and content; (iii) genome-wide knock-out, knock-down, and upregulation experiments to measure the phenotype when a gene is perturbed; (iv) interaction screens to uncover context-specificity of effects; (v) methods and applications of gene editing (vi) single cell readouts and other emerging technologies. Computational approaches are integral to all these topics, and will be covered by invited speakers, as well as sought for in submitted abstracts.

The conference will bring together biomedical researchers working on high throughput screening, genome engineering, and/or variant effect interpretation. We welcome abstracts on all major themes of this meeting to oral or poster presentations.


The conference will start at ~12.45 on 22 September and finish at ~6.20 on 25 September 2020. All times are given in British Summer Time. See the time where you are here.

Topics will include:

  • Understanding impact of coding variants
  • Measuring consequences of non-coding variation
  • Genetic screens to ascertain function in cells and organisms
  • Base editing at scale
  • Gene editing and disease
  • Interactions with genes, drugs, and environment
  • Single-cell approaches
  • New technology for readouts and perturbations

Organisers and speakers

Scientific programme committee

John Doench
Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, USA

Jolanda van Leeuwen
University of Lausanne, Lausanne, Switzerland

Leopold Parts
Wellcome Sanger Institute, UK

Lea Starita
University of Washington, USA

Confirmed speakers

Kenneth Baillie – University of Edinburgh, UK
Kristen Brennand – Ichan School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, USA
Maitreya Dunham – University of Washington, USA
Tom Ellis – Imperial College London, UK
Matthew Garnett – Wellcome Sanger Institute, UK
Jay Hesselberth – University of Colorado School of Medicine, USA
Rory Johnson – University College Dublin, Ireland
Joanna Loizou – CeMM Research Center for Molecular Medicine, Austria
Nozomu Yachie – University of Tokyo, Japan
Sylvie Noordermeer – Leiden University Medical Centre, The Netherlands
Shondra Pruett-Miller – St Judes Children’s Research Hospital, USA
Lea Starita – University of Washington, USA
Wensheng Wei – Peking University, China

Conference organisers

Lucy Criddle, Conference & Events Organiser
Treasa Creavin, Scientific Programme Manager


Standard Fee
Student £50
Delegates from LMICs* £50
Academic £100
Commercial £150

The virtual registration package includes access to all live-streamed sessions (including poster sessions and online networking channels), as well as access to all sessions ‘on-demand’ for four weeks after the event.

*To increase the international diversity of attendees at our meetings, we have reduced fees for delegates from Lower and Middle Income Countries (see list of countries here) If you are in need of financial support would like to apply for a bursary, please contact the conference organiser. When applying for a bursary you will be asked to provide a letter stating financial need and a CV.

Registration deadline: 14 September 2020


We welcome abstracts from all areas relevant to the main themes of the meeting, for both oral and poster presentations. Several oral presentations will be chosen from the abstracts submitted.

Abstracts will only be considered from registered delegates. Please use our online abstract submission system and follow the instructions given to ensure your abstract is submitted correctly. All abstracts must be submitted by the deadline. If you are intending to submit more than one abstract, please contact the conference organiser prior to registration.

The scientific programme committee will assess your abstract after the deadline has passed and you will be notified whether you have been selected for an oral or poster presentation.

All those accepted for a poster presentation will be given the opportunity to upload a short video describing their work.

Abstract deadlines:
21 July 2020 (oral presentations)
11 August 2020 (poster presentations)

How to upload an abstract once you have already completed registration:

  1. Log back into your registration account using either Firefox or Internet Explorer as your browser, via link above the ‘Share’ button on the right hand column of this page
  2. Click on ‘Account’ (top right).
  3. Then click on ‘View account history’. This will show a table of your event registrations.
  4. In the right-hand column you will see the option to ‘Upload file’ – click on this and select to upload an abstract.
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