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Australian Centre for Precision Health

Population health research to improve the future of health


Dissecting the genetic aetiology of complex diseases and traits

Humans differ in a range of traits, and our susceptibility to disease also varies. Studies into the resemblance between family members have suggested that genetic factors contribute to a large proportion of these individual differences. In the last ten years, our researchers have been actively contributing to many of the global efforts to find genes underlying differences in human traits relating to growth, obesity, and behaviour, as well as identifying genetic determinants of blood biomarkers and diseases such as schizophrenia and motor neuron disease.

These discoveries have typically been done as part of large scale international consortia, and our researchers continue to lead and contribute to many of these international research efforts. Indeed, thanks to the joint efforts of the international scientific community, we now know about thousands of genes which are associated with complex traits and diseases. The main purpose of finding these genetic variants is to provide novel insights and valuable knowledge that can be translated into disease prevention, risk prediction, diagnosis, treatment, drug discovery and public health policy. Below we list some examples of our current research projects in the area of genomics of complex diseases and traits.

Current research projects