This course focuses on the fundamental research methods and applications in the dynamic field of genetic epidemiology. To help students obtain a basic understanding of the field, the course includes topics such as assessing genetic influences on disease; advances in genomics technology; family based study designs for linkage, exome sequencing and case-parent trios; candidate gene and genome-wide association studies of both common and rare genetic variants; gene-environment interactions, epistasis and non-Mendelian genetics; software and web-based data resources; ethical issues in genetic epidemiology; and applications of genetic epidemiology to clinical practice and public health. Students will be exposed to a range of research approaches in genetic epidemiology, to examples of these approaches from the literature and from ongoing studies, and will have an opportunity to apply these methods by writing a grant application or human genome epidemiology review in their area of research interest.
Genetic epidemiology is a rapidly evolving, interdisciplinary field that integrates human genetics and epidemiology. This course is designed to help students understand many important facets of the discipline. By the end of this course, students will be able to:
- Explain key genetic concepts, describe current genomic technologies that are used in genetic epidemiology, and be able to identify relevant software and web-based data resources.
- Describe and compare research study designs used in genetic epidemiology, including family-based studies, genetic association studies, and studies of gene-environment interactions.
- Participate in discussions of ethical issues in genetic epidemiology and applications of genetic epidemiology to clinical practice and public health.
- Apply knowledge of genetic epidemiology research methods in the form of an NIH R21 grant proposal or a Human Genome Epidemiology (HuGE) review in a research area of interest to the student.