The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
Department of Epidemiology
Research in my lab is concentrated on understanding human evolution and the genetic basis of human disease through statistical, computational, and population genomics. Our work spans a number of human genetics subdisciplines, including disease-gene identification, mutation rate estimation, detection of recent positive selection, and reconstruction of demographic history. We are currently focused on developing new methods to analyze genomic data and by applying these methods to discover novel insights about the genetic basis of human disease, with particular emphasis on identifying and characterizing genes that increase the risk of developing common cancers (colorectal, breast, head and neck, lung, pancreatic, prostate, ovarian, bladder, and melanoma).
- Specific areas of interest include:
- Identifying intermediate-risk and high-risk cancer susceptibility loci from the analysis of rare genetic variation.
- Developing methods and software to identify disease-causing genes from sequence data.
- Developing new methods for pedigree analysis and cryptic relationship identification from genomic data.
- Estimating human mutation rates.
- Uncovering the genetic basis of recent positive selection in humans.
- Reconstructing human demographic history.
Graduate students in my lab would receive extensive, hands-on training in bioinformatics and computational genomics. Students will have the opportunity to take a leadership role in the identification of novel cancer-susceptibility loci from large-scale, next-generation sequencing projects. Students will also work both independently and as part of a collaborative team to develop and apply new algorithms for analyzing genomic data.
Education & Training
Ph.D. - University of Utah - 2008