The Biomedical Sequencing Facility (BSF) is Austria’s first technology platform dedicated to next generation sequencing in biomedicine and is thus expected to play a catalyzing role in the country’s development of genomic medicine.
The BSF not only operates next generation sequencing for Vienna’s medical campus (and beyond), but it also provides technological expertise and bioinformatic services for basic researchers and clinicians. Furthermore, it contributes to several flagship projects aimed at establishing proof-of-concept for genomic medicine in Austria.
Head of the Biomedical Sequencing Facility
Christoph Bock joined CeMM as Principal Investigator in 2012. He pursues interdisciplinary research aimed at understanding the epigenetic and gene-regulatory basis of cancer, and advancing precision medicine with genomics technology. His research group combines experimental biology (high-throughput sequencing, epigenetics, CRISPR screening, synthetic biology) with computer science (bioinformatics, machine learning, artificial intelligence). He is also a guest professor at the Medical University of Vienna, scientific coordinator of the Biomedical Sequencing Facility at CeMM, and group leader at the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for Rare and Undiagnosed Diseases. He coordinates an EU Horizon 2020 project on the single-cell analysis of human organoids as a contribution to the Human Cell Atlas. Christoph Bock is an elected member of the Young Academy of the Austrian Academy of Sciences and has received major research awards, including the Max Planck Society’s Otto Hahn Medal (2009), an ERC Starting Grant (2016–2021), and the Overton Prize of the International Society of Computational Biology (2017).
Thomas Winkler-Penz studied genetics and microbiology at the University of Vienna. During his PhD, his research focus was on molecular interactions of bacteria with their eukaryotic hosts. In 2013, he joined the Biomedical Sequencing Facility (BSF) at CeMM. He is an expert in genome, epigenome and transcriptome sequencing in cancer and human diseases. Thomas and the BSF team provide research support and access to cutting-edge next-generation sequencing technologies to enable precision medicine of the future.
Michael Schuster trained as a biochemist and received his PhD from the University of Vienna in 2003. From 2004 to 2012, he was staff scientist at the EMBL-European Bioinformatics Institute, Cambridge, UK for the Ensembl Genome Browser project led by Ewan Birney. He focused on the systematic quality assessment of automated genome annotation builds that informed decisions throughout build stages for the high-quality and high-information genome assemblies for human, mouse and zebrafish. Since the genomic context revealed further inconsistencies in up-stream data resources, he collaborated with biocurators at the EMBL-EBI, particularly UniProt and the Wellcome Trust Genome Campus on data quality issues.
Michael joined the Biomedical Sequencing Facility (BSF) at CeMM in 2013. As BSF Deputy Head and NGS bioinformatician, he is responsible for the data analysis service of genome, transcriptome and epigenome data sets that the BSF produces for research groups at CeMM, the Medical University of Vienna and the wider scientific community in Austria and Europe.