Positions

Professor
Molecular and Human Genetics
Baylor College of Medicine
Houston, TX, US
Director
Program in Quantitative and Computational Biosciences (QCB)
Baylor College of Medicine
Co-Director
Computational and Integrative Biomedical Research Center (CIBR)
Baylor College of Medicine
Member
Dan L Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center
Baylor College of Medicine
Houston, Texas, United States

Education

PhD from University Of California, Santa Cruz

Professional Interests

  • Genomics
  • Cancer Genomics
  • Bioinformatics
  • Epigenomics

Professional Statement

The Bioinformatics Research Laboratory (BRL), directed by Dr. Milosavljevic, develops new computational methods and discovery systems, with ongoing projects in genomics, epigenomics, extracellular RNA communication and tumor biology. The Genboree System is the largest software system developed at BRL. Genboree Workbench contains over two hundred software tools and utilities organized into toolsets for genomic, epigenomic, transcriptomic, and metagenome analysis. The Extracellular RNA Communications Consortium and a number of collaborative projects use Genboree as their core informatic infrastructure.

As part of the NIH Roadmap Epigenomics Initiative, the laboratory constructed a human epigenome atlas that maps cell-type specific epigenetic programs and identifies markers of cellular identity. This information is currently being applied to better understand the biology of human tumors, specifically the diversity of cell types within tumors and their interactions during cancer progression.

As part of the NIH Extracellular RNA Communication Consortium, the laboratory is constructing an atlas of extracellular RNAs involved in intercellular communication. One specific area of interest are the interactions of epithelial, stromal and immune cells within tumors that are mediated my microRNAs. This information will translate into therapies that target intercellular communication and “liquid biopsy” biomarkers that may be found in human body fluids.

The laboratory is involved in analysis of genome variation in human health and disease. As part of the Clinical Genome Resource project, the laboratory is developing a Pathogenicity Calculator to aid the interpretation of human genome variation in clinical contexts. One specific focus is on the identification of actionable variants discovered upon genome sequencing.

The origins and the impact of genetic variation within the (98.5%) fraction of the genome that does not code for protein sequence is currently very limited. We believe that this knowledge will emerge in large part from the study of interactions between genomic and epigenomic variation. Using the reference epigenomes in the human epigenome atlas, we have recently established an association between structural mutability of the human genome and hypomethylation in human germline. We are expanding these studies to better understand interactions between the epigenome and genomic instability not only in human germline but also in human somatic cells and in cancer, with a focus on highly rearranged genomes found in breast, ovarian, prostate, and brain cancer.

Selected Publications