Dana L Abramovitz received her Ph.D. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics from Columbia University and did her post‐doctoral fellowship at The Scripps Research Institute. She then moved to Ingenuity Systems, a software development company for life sciences researchers. Dana went to business school at the Stanford Graduate School of Business and focused on healthcare new ventures, earning a Master’s in Management. Following Stanford, Dana worked for Strand Life Sciences, primarily a software company, to help them transition from life sciences research to healthcare. Dana recently moved to Austin and is currently working with SXSW, focusing on Health and Med Tech.


Humans are creatures of habit, we like what is familiar to us. As scientists we explore and push the boundaries of knowledge, but we are still human and tend to read the same journals and attend conferences in our field. But biology is not limited, nor does it adhere, to our specified boundaries. Limiting our scope to our defined fields prevents us from observing problems from all possible angles. It also limits our access to new technologies and techniques and from creating new uses from existing standards. Are there successful, real--‐world models for a more inter--‐disciplinary approach? SXSW Interactive was introduced over 20 years ago as a way to broaden the conversation around the uses of technology and promote collaboration. The outcomes from enabling the collaboration of people with different disciplines and areas of interest have led to new insights and new innovations, and the ability to take on and solve much larger and more complex problems. The same approach can be applied to molecular medicine and diagnostics and could perhaps help us expand the research and techniques, leading to new solutions and opportunities.