A multi-species approach to the genetics of complex disease.
Lucy Davison is a European and RCVS Specialist in Small Animal Internal Medicine, and holds an MRC Clinician Scientist Fellowship (2018-2023). This position is held jointly with the Royal Veterinary College, University of London https://www.rvc.ac.uk/about/our-people/lucy-davison
We are interested in understanding the genetic basis of complex diseases. We study a range of conditions, across many species, but have a particular interest the role of genes and environment in the risk of diabetes mellitus.
Type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1D) arises as the result of many different genetic and environmental factors, most of which are not fully understood. T1D affects more than 400,000 people in the UK including up to 30,000 children. Diabetes mellitus is also commonly diagnosed in veterinary medicine, affecting 1 in 300 dogs, and up to 1 in 150 cays, with certain breeds being genetically pre-disposed.
We aim to understand the environmental influences involved in the development of diabetes mellitus in a range of species, and how these environmental factors interact with genetic risk. In Oxford, we work closely with Prof Chris O’Callaghan’s group. We have a special focus on using high-throughput sequencing techniques to study the balance of micro-organisms in the gut (microbiome) as well as the molecular events that ultimately lead to pancreatic damage or dysfunction in diabetes mellitus.
Together with Prof Brian Catchpole, at the Royal Veterinary College, Lucy is the Lead Investigator of the Canine Diabetes Genetics Partnership (@theCDGP and CanineDiabetesGenetics.org ). Lucy is also the Principal Investigator of the UKRI-funded MASCOT Project (Mapping Animal Susceptibility to Coronaviruses : Outcomes and Transcriptomics).