This month we’re introcuding William Schierding, from the University of Auckland/Liggins Institute. William received the Illumina™ Emerging Researcher Award in 2020 for his work describing how non-coding genetic variants could dysregulate GBA expression in Parkinson’s Disease.
Amongst 3 billion bases of DNA lurks some 10 million points of genetic variation, many of which contribute to disease risk. Around two-thirds of those disease-associated genetic variants are in non-coding regions of the DNA. The connection between non-coding variants and altered gene function is a major challenge, which makes it difficult to understand why this variation is hazardous to our health, leaving genetic diagnosis tricky and early remediation nearly impossible. My research aims to answer the question, “How does non-coding genetic variation impact on the three-dimensional structure of the DNA, leading to gene dysregulation and disease?”
What advice would you give your undergrad self?
I would warn young me about how my career move to NZ would bring me to the BEST place to live and study but it can at times be challenging and costly to keep in touch with US collaborators. St. Louis is -18 hours! Apologies to everyone I’ve lost contact with over the years.
#ChromatinBiology #3Dgenome #enhancer #epigenetics #AEpiA