Michael E Zwick, Ph.D.

Associate Professor

Office: 331 Whitehead

Lab: 335

Phone: 404-727-9924

Email: mzwick@emory.edu

Additional Contact Information

Mailing Address:

Whitehead Biomedical Research Building

615 Michael St.

Atlanta, GA 30322

Additional Websites

Research Interests

The central challenges in human genetics lie in efficiently identifying, annotating and interpreting how genetic variation influences complex human phenotypes. Our main research projects use cutting-edge technologies in order to help identify genomic variation contributing to common, complex human disorders. Current projects include:

Identifying Autism Susceptibility Genes (P. I.): The four-fold excess of affected males with autism and genetic linkage findings suggests a role for X-linked genes. We have chosen to focus on the targeted sequencing of genes on the X chromosome to identify putative autism susceptibility variants. This work is funded by both the National Institutes of Health/National Institute of Mental Health (http://www.nimh.nih.gov/index.shtml) and the Simons Foundation Autism Research Initiative (https://sfari.org/) Developing software to aid in analyzing the dense resequencing datasets we produce is also a goal of this project.

Copy Number Variation as a Cause of Congenital Heart Defects in Down Syndrome (P. I.): The genetic causes of congenital heart defects (CHD) remain largely undiscovered. Individuals with trisomy 21, the cause of Down Syndrome, have much higher rates of CHD, including the very severe atrioventricular septal defects (AVSD). Our project aims to identify both structural genetic variation and common single nucleotide polymorphisms that act to increase the risk of AVSD. Identifying the genetic basis of this disorder can provide insights into the origins of CHD and ultimately lead to improved methods of treatment and prevention.This work is funded by both the National Institutes of Health/National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/)

Early-onset forms of Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD): With collaborators Subra Kugathasan, David Cutler, Mike Epstein.

Software Tools We Have Developed With Collaborators:

SeqAnt - Sequence Annotator (http://seqant.genetics.emory.edu/)

MOPed - Microarray Oligonucleotide Probe Designer (http://moped.genetics.emory.edu/)

To learn more about genomics at Emory: 

Emory Genome Portal (http://genome.emory.edu/)

My Graduate Programs at Emory

Program Director

Graduate Program in Population Biology, Ecology and Evolution (PBEE)


Faculty Member

Graduate Program in Genetics and Molecular Biology (GMB)


Areas of Specialization

  • Human Disease Gene Mapping
  • Population Biology, Population Genetics, Population Genomics
  • Methods of Targeted Enrichment and Next Generation Sequencing
  • Open Source Software Tools for Genomics


  • Postdoctoral Fellow, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, 2000-2002
  • Postdoctoral Fellow, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, 1999-2000
  • PhD, University of California at Davis, Davis, CA,1993-1998
  • BS, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY,1985-1989