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Julie Hussin

Post-doctoral researcher

Work summary

My research covers areas of evolutionary biology, population genetics and medical genomics. My broad interests are in studying population and disease cohorts using bioinformatics and statistical genetics tools to understand how genetic variation modulates the expression of phenotypes. I am also greatly interested in the evolutionary advantage of recombination and how this process contributes to human disease and genomic instabilities.

During my postdoc at the Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics, I am interested in investigating the role of epistasis as a source of pleiotropy in humans, in order to learn about the genetic architecture of covariation between diseases. My research will also focus on better characterising patterns of diversity in genes expressed in metabolic pathways that affect individual responses to drugs and on understanding how this diversity was shaped by evolutionary forces. One of the main goals of these projects is the improvement of genetic testing to allow more reliable personalised medecine. In the Donnelly group, I will also be working on the genomics of the monotreme the duck-billed platypus, focusing on the evolution of sex chromosomes in this organism.

Before moving to Oxford, I completed a PhD in Bioinformatics at University of Montreal, Canada, in Dr Philip Awadalla's lab at Ste-Justine Hospital Research Centre. My thesis focused on understanding the implications of meiotic recombination in human disease, with a particular focus on pediatric conditions.

Selected publications

Casals F, Hodgkinson A, Hussin J, et al.  Whole-exome sequencing reveals a rapid change in the frequency of rare functional variants in a founding population of humans. PLOS Genetics 2013 (in press).

Hussin J, Sinnett D, Casals F, et al. Rare allelic forms of PRDM9 associated with childhood leukemogenesis. Genome Res. 2013 Mar;23(3) :419-30. doi : 10.1101/gr.144188.112. Epub 2012 Dec 5.

Hitz MP, Lemieux-Perreault LP, Marshall C, et al. Rare copy number variants contribute to congenital left-sided heart disease. PLoS Genet. 2012 Sep;8(9) :e1002903.

Casals F, Idaghdour Y, Hussin J and Awadalla P. Next-generation sequencing approaches for genetic mapping of complex diseases. J Neuroimmunol. 2012;  248, (1-2): 10-22.

Cartwright R, Hussin J, Keebler J, Stone E, and Awadalla P. A family-based probabilistic method for capturing de novo mutations from high-throughput short-read sequencing data. J Stat Appl Genet Mol Biol. 2012; 11(2), Article 6.

Hussin J, Gendron R, Roy-Gagnon M-H, Andelfinger G and Awadalla P. Age-dependent recombination rates in human pedigrees. PLoS Genet. 2011; 7(9) : e1002251.

Myers RA, Casals F, Gauthier J, et al. A population genetic approach to mapping neurological disorder genes using deep resequencing. PLoS Genet 2011; 7(2) : e1001318.

Branch OH, Sutton PL, Castro JC, Barnes C, Hussin J, Awadalla P, Guerra GH. Evolution of Plasmodium falciparum genetic diversity in the Peruvian Amazon. Mol Biol Evol. 2010; 28 (7) : 1973-1986. doi : 10.1093/molbev/msq311.

Guernsey DL, Jiang H, Hussin J et al. Mutations in centrosomal protein CEP152 in primary microcephaly families linked to MCPH4. Am J Hum Genet. 2010;87( 1): 40-51.

Hussin J, Lefebvre J-F, Nadeau P and Labuda D. Haplotype allelic classes for detecting ongoing positive selection. BMC Bioinformatics. 2010; 11(1): 65.