• Room 2.801 Stopford Building. The University of Manchester. Oxford Road.

    M13 9PT Manchester

    United Kingdom

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Personal profile

Overview

  • Wellcome Trust Research Career Fellow within the Arthritis Research UK Center for Genetics and Genomics.
  • Tutor for Personal and Professional Development (TPPD) - MBChB 

Biography

I completed my Bachelors of Biochemistry at the University of Granada in Spain. I developed a strong interest in research during my final two years, when I undertook a laboratory-based research project at the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology after being awarded an Introduction to Research scholarship.

I joined Professor Javier Martin’s group at the López Neyra Parasitology and Biomedicine Institute in Granada in 2002. The focus of my work was the study of the genetic susceptibility to rheumatoid arthritis (RA), but I also collaborated in the study of other autoimmune diseases, such as systemic lupus erythematosus, ankylosing spondylitis, celiac disease and inflammatory bowel disease. My work was funded by PhD studentships from the Spanish Research Council and Ministry of Science. I obtained my PhD in 2007 with the highest honours, summa cum laude.

I joined the Arthritis Research UK Epidemiology Unit in 2008 as a research associate. Shortly after, I was awarded a Marie Curie Intra-European Fellowship, under the supervision of Professors Jane Worthington and Anne Barton. My project was focused on the study of the RA associated region 6q23, through fine mapping, bioinformatics and functional studies.

In 2011, I was awarded a Wellcome Trust Research Career Development Fellowship to build and expand on this experience in functional genomics and explore further how genetic variation affects gene function and, in turn, how this relates to the molecular mechanism of disease.

Research interests

Large-scale genetic association studies have been extremely successful in identifying a large number of genetic variants (single nucleotide polymorphisms or SNPs) that predispose to complex human traits. One of the biggest challenges in human genomics now is to interpret the functional consequences of these variants. The majority of genetic associations to date are with markers that are intergenic and potentially may affect gene regulation.

My main research interests centre on the identification of causal variants and genes within regions associated with complex traits, using a combination of genetic analysis, bioinformatic tools and functional experiments to investigate how the variants affect gene expression and function and, ultimately, how that affects disease pathways.

Memberships of committees and professional bodies

American Society of Human Genetics

 

Associate Editor, BMC Medical Genetics

 

AcademiaNet: the portal to excellent women academics

http://www.academia-net.org/artikel/1217062

Qualifications

BSc Biochemistry 2002

PhD 2007

My group

James Ding - Postdoctoral Researcher

Priya Gaddi - Postdoctoral Researcher

Chenfu Shi - PhD student

Nadia Iqbal - Research Technician

Catherine Smedley - Research Technician

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being

Research Beacons, Institutes and Platforms

  • Lydia Becker Institute

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