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Structural and Computational Biology and Molecular Biophysics

Houston, Texas

A BCM research lab.
Structural and Computational Biology & Molecular Biophysics
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Richard A. Gibbs, Ph.D.

Richard A. Gibbs, Ph.D.

Richard A. Gibbs, Ph.D.

Wofford Cain Chair in Molecular and Human Genetics
Professor, Department of Molecular and Human Genetics

Other Positions

Professor, Programs in Cell & Molecular Biology and Translational Biology & Molecular Medicine
Director, Human Genome Sequencing Center


B.Sc., University of Melbourne (1979)
Ph.D., University of Melbourne (1985)
Postdoc, Baylor College of Medicine (1990)

Research Interests:

Richard Gibbs received a B.Sc.(Hons) in 1979 and a Ph.D. in Genetics and Radiation Biology in 1985 at the University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia. He subsequently moved to Houston as a Postdoctoral Fellow at Baylor College of Medicine to study the molecular basis of human X-linked diseases and to develop technologies for rapid genetic analysis. During this period, he also developed several fundamental nucleic acid technologies. In 1991, he joined the faculty at BCM and played a key role in the early planning and development phases of the Human Genome Project (HGP). In 1996, he established the Human Genome Sequencing Center (HGSC) that subsequently was chosen to be one of five worldwide sites to complete the final phase of the project. The HGSC contributed approximately ten percent of the HGP and it was completed in 2004. He currently holds the rank of Director and Professor.

The HGSC now occupies more than 36,000 square feet, employs over 200 staff including eighteen faculty. The group collaborated to sequence the first species of fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, the Brown Norway rat and rhesus macaque. The group independently completed the second species of fruit fly, Drosophila pseudoobscura, the honeybee, wasp, flour beetle, the bovine genome, the sea urchin, Dictyostelium discoideum and innumerable bacteria. The BCM-HGSC also engaged in a program to sequence all human cDNAs, create the human and bovine haplotype maps and more recently, the cancer genome project. In 2007, the group produced the first sequence of a diploid human, James Watson. In that year a new method for capture and analysis of human DNA was developed.

Current research within the HGSC is focused upon the genomics of cancer, heart disease and autism. To achieve this the group is sequencing single human genomes at an increasing rate. New molecular technologies are being developed for the mapping and sequencing, for exploring novel chemistries for DNA tagging, and to enable development of instrumentation for DNA manipulation. The HGSC is also part of the Human Microbiome Project and has an active bioinformatics program, with research projects involving biologists and computer scientists. Problems under study focus on developing tools for generating, manipulating, and analyzing genome data.

Selected Publications:

  • Grover M, Campeau PM, Lietman CD, Lu JT, Gibbs RA, Schlesinger AE and Lee BH. Osteogenesis imperfecta without features of type V caused by a mutation in the IFITM5 gene. J Bone Miner Res, [Epub ahead of print] (2013). PubMed
  • Lotta LA, Tuana G, Yu J, Martinelli I, Wang M, Yu F, Passamonti SM, Pappalardo E, Valsecchi C, Scherer SE, Hale Iv W, Muzny DM, Randi G, Rosendaal FR, Gibbs RA and Peyvandi F. Next-generation sequencing study finds an excess of rare, coding single nucleotide variants of ADAMTS13 in patients iwth deep vein thrombosis. J Thromb Haemost, [Epub ahead of print] (2013). PubMed
  • Bainbridge MN, Hu H, Muzny DM, Musante L, Lupski JR, Graham BH, Chen W, Gripp KW, Jenny K, Wienker TF, Yang Y, Sutton VR, Gibbs RA and Ropers HH. De novo truncating mutations in ASXL3 are associated with a novel clinical phenotype with similarities to Bohring-Opitz sydrome. Genome Med, 5(2):11 (2013). PubMed
  • Wang Y, Lu J, Yu J, Gibbs RA and Yu F. An integrative variant analysis pipeline for accurate genotype/haplotype inference in population NGS data. Genome Res, 23(5):833-42 (2013). PubMed
  • Powell BC, Jiang L, Muzny DM, Treviño LR, Dreyer ZE, Strong LC, Wheeler DA, Gibbs RA and Plon SE. Identification of TP53 as an acute lymphocytic leukemia susceptibility gene through exome sequencing. Pediatr Blood Cancer, 60(6):E1-3 (2013). PubMed
  • English AC, Richards S, Han Y, Wang M, Vee V, Qu J, Qin X, Muzny DM, Reid JG, Worley KC and Gibbs RA. Mind the gap: upgrading genomes with Pacific Biosciences RS long-read sequencing technology. PLoS One, 7(11):e47768 (2012). PubMed
  • Rogers J, Ravvendran M, Fawcett GL, Fox AS, Shelton OE, Oler JA, Cheverud J, Muzny DM, Gibbs RA, Davidson RJ and Kalin NH. CRHR1 genotypes, neural circuits and the diathesis for anxiety and depression. Mol Psychiatry, 18(6):700-7 (2013). PubMed

For more publications, see listing on PubMed.

Contact Information:

Department: Molecular & Human Genetics
Address: Baylor College of Medicine
HGSC, Room N1519.04
One Baylor Plaza
Houston, TX 77030
Phone: 713-798-6539
Fax: 713-798-5741
Additional Links: Human Genome Sequencing Center, Molecular and Human Genetics

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