Professor Naomi Wray: Program in complex trait genomics

The Wray laboratory focusses on understanding the genetic contribution to psychiatric and neurological disorders. The group specialises in applying new analytical methods of genomic data to provide insights into these complex disorders, with an ultimate goal to improve diagnosis, prognosis and treatments. The lab plays a key role in the international Psychiatric Genomics Consortium and Prof Wray co-leads the sporadic ALS Australia systems genomics consortium (SALSA), funded by the IceBucket Challenge.

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Researcher biography

Professor Naomi Wray holds joint appointments at the Institute for Molecular Bioscience (IMB) and the Queensland Brain Institute (QBI) within the University of Queensland. She is a National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Leadership Fellow, a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science and a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Science. In 2020 she was awarded the NHMRC Elizabeth Blackburn Award for Leadership in Basic Science. She is a Clarivate Highly Cited researcher. Her research focusses on development of quantitative genetics and genomics methodology with application to psychiatric and neurological disorders. She plays a key role in the International Psychiatric Genomics Consortium and co-leads the sporadic ALS Australia systems genomics consortium (SALSA) funded by the MND Research Australia IceBucket Challenge and FightMND. She is one of three international advisors to JAMA Psychiatry and is on the editorial advsiory board of Neuron.

She is a Director of the Program in Complex Trait Genomics (PCTG) funded as an NHMRC Program Grant 2017-2021. The PCTG comprises a critical mass of more than 30 post-doctoral researchers, research assistants and students, all supported by external grant funding. PCTG is structured into five research themes: Statistical Genomics, Systems Genomics, Psychiatric Genomics, MND Genomics and Biobank Genomics.

She leads the COVID-OZGenetics and ATHENA-BIO-COVID Project, which are recruiting participants who have tested positive for COVID19 - at any time - and live in Australia. Participants describe symptoms at the time of infection, and at 3 month intervals and then provide a blood sample. The relationship between DNA variations and variability in symptoms will be investigated. The study is governed by human ethics approvals and will contribute to a worldwide effort.