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James Kent, 2003-05-31

 Item — Multiple Containers
Oral History | James Kent
Oral History | James Kent

Scope and Contents

James Kent, bioinformatics researcher, is interviewed by Mila Pollock and Kiryn Haslinger on May 31, 2003, at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, Cold Spring Harbor, New York.

James Kent discusses the following in his interview: Scene 1. Becoming a scientist -- Scene 2. Involvement in genomics -- Scene 3. Involvement in genomics: developing assembly software -- Scene 4. Mechanics of the Human Genome Project -- Scene 5. The final assembly -- Scene 6. Challenges of the Human Genome Project -- Scene 7. Dangers of the Human Genome Project -- Scene 8. The future of genomic research -- Scene 9. Competition in science -- Scene 10. Gene patenting -- Scene 11. Science and spirituality -- Scene 12. Bruce Stillman -- Scene 13. Sydney Brenner -- Scene 14. Jim Watson, personality and influence -- Scene 15. Meeting Jim Watson.


  • Creation: 2003-05-31


Conditions Governing Access

Portions of this collection have been digitized and are available online: Select tapes have been digitized thanks to support from CLIR Recordings at Risk Grant awarded in 2021, these tapes are available for research online via our Oral History Website and in person at CSHL Archives. Please contact CSHL Archives with any questions regarding availability.

Biographical / Historical

Jim Kent is a research scientist at the University of California, Santa Cruz's Center for Biomolecular Science and Engineering. After a stint working in the computer animation industry, he entered the Molecular, Cell, and Developmental Biology Ph.D. program at Santa Cruz. While completing his degree, he became increasingly interested in bioinformatics. Concurrently, the human genome was being sequenced, accumulating in the databases and was scheduled to be released in one month’s time—however, still no technology was in place to assemble its many sequences. In one month, Jim Kent created a computer program called the GigAssembler and computationally compiled for the first time, the entire human genome so that it could be released to the public at its intended deadline. Jim Kent focuses on understanding the way in which genes are turned on and off to create varying outcomes.

He won the Benjamin Franklin Award in 2003.


2 Cassettes (Camcorder footage) : Hi-8 - CSHL1267, CSHL1268

2 Cassettes (Working copy) : MiniDV - CSHL1088, CSHL1089

1 Optical Disks (Talking science with James Kent) : DVD ; 61 min.

Language of Materials

From the Collection: English