Karen Conneely, Ph.D.

Associate Professor

Phone: 404-727-2986

Email: kconnee@emory.edu

Additional Contact Information

Additional Websites

Research Interests

My research focuses on statistical methods for genetic association studies and large-scale studies of DNA methylation.  I am currently involved in GWAS, candidate gene studies, and methylation studies involving psychiatric outcomes, environmental stressors, and aging.  Through the development of novel techniques and adaptation of existing ones, my work seeks to identify biomarkers and variants involved in disease, and to explore the role of DNA methylation as a mediator between environment and phenotype.


  • PhD, Biostatistics, University of Michigan, 2008
  • MA, Economics, Princeton University, 1997
  • BS, Statistics, University of Illinois, 1994


Smith AK, Kilaru V, Kocak M, Almli LM, Mercer KB, Ressler KJ, Tylavsky FA, Conneely KN (2014) Methylation quantitative trait loci (meQTLs) are consistently detected across ancestry, developmental stage, and tissue type.  BMC Genomics, in press.

Feng H, Conneely KN*, Wu H* (2014) A Bayesian hierarchical model to detect differentially methylated loci from single nucleotide resolution sequencing data.  Nucleic Acids Research, in press. (* indicates shared authorship) 

Barfield RT, Almli LM, Kilaru V, Smith AK, Mercer KB, Duncan R, Klengel T, Mehta D, Binder EB, Epstein MP, Ressler KJ, Conneely KN (2014) Accounting for population stratification in DNA methylation studies.  Genetic Epidemiology, Epub ahead of print.

Jiang Y, Epstein MP, Conneely KN (2013) Assessing the impact of population stratification on association studies of rare variation. Human Heredity, 76:28-35.

Barfield RT, Kilaru V, Smith AK, Conneely KN (2012) CpGassoc: An R function for analysis of DNA methylation microarray data, Bioinformatics, 28:1280-1.

Conneely KN, Capell BC, Erdos MR, Sebastiani P, Solovieff N, Swift AJ, Baldwin CT, Budagov T, Barzilai N, Atzmon G, Puca AA, Perls TT, Geesaman BJ, Boehnke M, Collins FS (2012) Human longevity and common variations in the LMNAgene: a meta-analysis. Aging Cell, 11(3):475-481.

Alisch RS, Barwick BG, Chopra P, Myrick LK, Satten GA, Conneely KN, Warren ST (2012) Age-associated DNA methylation in pediatric populations. Genome Research, 22:623-632. 

Kilaru V, Barfield RT, Schroeder JW, Smith AK, Conneely KN (2012) MethLAB: A graphical user interface package for the analysis of array-based DNA methylation data.  Epigenetics 7(3):225-9.   

Schroeder JW, Conneely KN, Cubells JC, Kilaru V, Newport JD, Knight BT, Stowe ZN, Brennan PA, Krushkal J, Tylavsky FA, Taylor RN, Adkins RM, Smith AK (2011)  Neonatal DNA methylation patterns associate with gestational age. Epigenetics, 6(12):1498-504. 

Smith AK, Conneely KN, Kilaru V, Mercer KB, Weiss TE, Bradley-Davino B, Tang Y, Gillespie CF, Cubells JF, Ressler KJ (2011) Differential immune system DNA methylation and cytokine regulation in Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. American Journal of Medical Genetics Part B:Neuropsychiatric Genetics 156(6):700-8.

Conneely KN, Boehnke M (2010)  Meta-analysis of genetic association studies and adjustment for multiple testing of correlated SNPs and traits. Genetic Epidemiology 34(7):739-746.

Gaulton KJ, Willer CJ, Li Y, Scott LJ, Conneely KN, Jackson AU, Duren WL, Chines PS, Narisu N, Bonnycastle LL, Luo J, Tong M, Sprau AG, Pugh EW, Doheny KF, Valle TT, Abecasis GR, Tuomilehto J, Bergman RN, Collins FS, Boehnke M, Mohlke KL (2008)  Comprehensive association study of type 2 diabetes and related quantitative traits with 222 candidate genes  Diabetes 57(11):3136-44    

Capell BC, Olive M, Erdos MR, Cao K, Faddah DA, Tavarez UL, Conneely KN, Qu X, San H, Ganesh SK, Chen X, Avallone H, Kolodgie FD, Virmani R, Nabel EG, Collins FS (2008)  A farnesyltransferase inhibitor prevents both the onset and late progression of cardiovascular disease in a progeria mouse model. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 105(41):15902-7

Conneely KN, Boehnke M (2007) So many correlated tests, so little time! Rapid adjustment of p-values for multiple correlated tests.   American Journal of Human Genetics 81:1158-1168

Scott LJ, Mohlke KL, Bonnycastle LL, Willer CJ, Li Y, Duren WL, Erdos MR, Stringham HM, Chines PS, Jackson AU, Prokunina-Olsson L, Ding CJ, Swift AJ, Narisu N, Hu T, Pruim R, Xiao R, Li XY, Conneely KN, Riebow NL, Sprau AG, Tong M, White PP, Hetrick KN, Barnhart MW, Bark CW, Goldstein JL, Watkins L, Xiang F, Saramies J, Buchanan TA, Watanabe RM, Valle TT, Kinnunen L, Abecasis GR, Pugh EW, Doheny KF, Bergman RN, Tuomilehto J, Collins FS, Boehnke M (2007)   A genome-wide association study of type 2 diabetes in Finns detects multiple susceptibility variants.   Science 316:1341-1345

Willer CJ, Bonnycastle LL, Conneely KN, Duren WL, Jackson AU, Scott LJ, Narisu N, Chines PS, Skol A, Stringham HM, Petrie J, Erdos MR, Swift AJ, Enloe ST, Sprau AG, Smith E, Tong M, Doheny KF, Pugh EW, Watanabe RM, Buchanan TA, Valle TT, Bergman RN, Tuomilehto J, Mohlke KL, Collins FS, Boehnke M (2007)   Screening of 134 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) previously associated with type 2 diabetes replicates association with 12 SNPs in nine genes.  Diabetes 56:256-264

Bonnycastle LL, Willer CJ, Conneely KN, Jackson AU, Burrill CP, Watanabe RM, Chines PS, Narisu N, Scott LJ, Enloe ST, Swift AJ, Duren WL, Erdos MR, Riebow NL, Buchanan TA, Valle TT, Tuomilehto J, Bergman RN, Mohlke KL, Boehnke M, Collins FS (2006)   Common variants in MODY genes contribute to risk of type 2 diabetes in Finns.   Diabetes 55:2534-2540

Capell BC, Erdos MR, Madigan JP, Fiordalisi JJ, Varga R, Conneely KN, Gordon LB, Der CJ, Cox AD, Collins FS (2005)   Inhibiting farnesylation of progerin prevents the characteristic nuclear blebbing of Hutchinson-Gilford progeria syndrome.   Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 102:12879-12884

Conneely KN, Silander K, Scott LJ, Mohlke KL, Lazaridis KN, Valle TT, Tuomilehto J, Bergman RN, Watanabe RM, Buchanan TA, Collins FS, Boehnke M (2004)   Variation in the resistin gene is associated with obesity and insulin-related phenotypes in Finnish subjects.   Diabetologia47:1782-1788