Professor Andrew Morris BSc, MSc, PhD

Chair in Statistical Genetics Health Data Science


Personal Statement

The primary aim of my research is the development and evaluation of novel statistical methodology for the analysis of the “next-generation” of genome-wide association studies (GWAS) of complex human traits. My research considers common and rare genetic variation from diverse ethnic groups, interrogated through traditional GWAS genotyping arrays, supplemented by imputation, and via whole-exome or whole-genome re-sequencing studies. I have focused on developing methods to enable discovery of novel loci through improved modelling of traits, and fine-mapping through aggregation of GWAS from multiple ethnic groups, and integration with genomic annotation in relevant tissues. The analytical tools that I have developed have been widely utilized in GWAS of a huge range of complex human traits. I have co-led analytical groups in international consortia efforts making use of cutting edge studies to understand the genetic basis of type 2 diabetes (DIAGRAM, T2D-GENES, DIAMANTE) and related metabolic phenotypes (MAGIC and AAGILE), kidney function, anthropometric measures (GIANT), blood pressure (ICBP), and women’s health disorders (including endometriosis and polycystic ovary syndrome). I have previously contributed to ground-breaking studies of human genetic variation and its impact on common diseases including the International HapMap Consortium and the Wellcome Trust Case Control Consortium. I have contributed to the training of researchers for the analysis of GWAS, having supervised 8 students to the successful completion of their PhD (to date). I currently co-lead the Wellcome Trust Advanced Course on the “Design and Analysis of Genetic-based Association Studies” (since 2006), and previously acted as co-course director for the Wellcome Trust DPhil Program in Genomic Medicine and Statistics, at the University of Oxford.