Personal Genomes (Virtual Conference)

28–30 April 2021

Wellcome Genome Campus, UK

Promoting greater diversity and ethical sharing of genome data


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

Over the past few years advances in sequencing technology, efforts to mainstream genomics in healthcare systems, increased sharing of genomic information, and direct-to-consumer genetic testing have brought us to the cusp of the long-promised ‘genomics revolution’.

However, these advances have brought several challenges including the interpretation of results from genetic tests, which are in part amplified by the lack of standards and knowledge on outcomes from such results. In parallel access to direct-to-consumer personal genetic testing has whetted the public’s appetite for genotyping and ancestry testing, which can result in increased enquires with clinicians in public healthcare systems. Sharing personal genomic data could result in access by third parties for unintended purposes. Finally the vast majority of genomes in public databases continue to be of European ancestries, potentially exacerbating existing health disparities.

The second Personal Genomes conference aims to address these issues. It will bring together geneticists, bioinformaticians, and clinicians from academic and the commercial sector interested in learning the extent to which current genetic testing technologies can help people learn about their personal health and heritage. The meeting aims to democratise access to human genome technologies; facilitate and advocate best practice and governance of personal genomics data access; and promote openness and ethical sharing of personal genome data, while protecting privacy of the individuals.


The conference will start at approximately 1pm 28 April and close at approximately 7pm on 30 April 2021. All times are given in British Summer Time. See the time where you are here.

Topics will include:

  • Promoting diverse reference genomes
  • Clinical implementation and interpretation
  • Infrastructure and innovation
  • Data sharing: trust and governance
  • Personal genomics and pandemics

Organisers and speakers

Scientific programme committee

Stephan Beck
University College London, UK

Manuel Corpas
Cambridge Precision Medicine, UK

Saskia Sanderson
Early Disease Detection Research Project, UK

Mahsa Shabani
Ghent University, Belgium

Keynote speakers

Joanna Mountain
23andMe, USA

Michael Snyder
Stanford University School of Medicine, USA

Confirmed speakers

Jeff Barrett – Wellcome Sanger Institute, UK
Jantina de Vries – University of Capetown, South Africa
Edward Dove – University of Edinburgh, UK
Segun Fatumo – London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, UK
Deanne Hanchant-Nichols – University of South Australia, Australia
Mariam Jamal-Hanjani – University College of London, UK
Thomas Keane – European Bioinformatics Institute, UK
Eimear Kenny – Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, USA
Amit Khera – Massachusetts General Hospital, USA
Hans Lehrach – Max Planck Institute for Molecular Genetics, Germany
Anna Middleton – Wellcome Genome Campus, UK
Allan Orozco – University of Costa Rica, Costa Rica
Serena Scollen – Elixir, UK
Angela Solano – University of Buenos Aires, Argentina

Conference organisers

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

How to apply

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.

Bursary deadline: 12 April 2021

Registration deadline: 19 April 2021

Log in details for the virtual conference portal will be provided a couple of days before the event.


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 deadline: 16 March 2021

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.

Keynote lectures from 2019 meeting

New technologies and sharing comprehensive personal precision-medicine data - George Church

Keynote lecture by George Church (Harvard University, USA) at Personal Genomes 2019 (April 2019) oganised by Wellcome Genome Campus Advanced Courses and Scientific Conferences.

Genetic privacy: friend or foe?

Keynote lecture by Yaniv Erlich (MyHeritage, Israel) at Personal Genomes conference  (April 2019) organised by Wellcome Genome Campus Advanced Courses and Scientific Conferences.

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