Cake
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    • Yes! You are absolutely right, many researchers devote themselves to understanding the treatment or cause of a particular disorder or trait. It's a great observation that my research addresses a diverse range of traits. Right now we have projects on Alzheimer's Disease, cholesterol levels and type 2 diabetes risk in Mexican American and Hispanic populations, developmental stuttering and developmental language disorder. We have a project on apical periodontitis (tooth decay), and even one on looking at HIV susceptibility in rhesus macaque that have been given a vaccine! The common thread in our work is not the disease, but rather it's the math that underlies the search for the causal genetic factors. My lab develops new algorithms and statistical approaches that can be used to find the genes the impact disease risk in different genetic contexts. For example, can we find and use familial relatedness to help us find genes that put people at risk of disease? Can we use genetic samples derived from multiple ancestral populations to help narrow our search for genes? These kinds of questions motivate our work and help us create tools that can be used in my lab and by other geneticists around the world!