Alison’s scientific background is in biomedical sciences and bioinformatics. She initially studied biomedical sciences at the University of Durham, UK. Having become interested in the then new field of bioinformatics she did a MSc in information technology at Teesside University, UK. She went on to study at the University of Reading, UK completing a bioinformatics-based PhD on investigating the effects of mutations on the structure of p53, before working for a time in academia, including 8 years as the curator of the CATH protein classification database. After eventually deciding to pursue a career in scientific publishing, she joined BioMed Central in 2014, initially as a Database Editor for the ISRCTN clinical trial registry. Alison joined the BMC series as the Editor for BMC Genetics in 2016. Alison also writes on the BioMed Central blog network and is an Editor for the On Medicine blog.
Animal population genetics
Dr. Ma joined the Editorial Board of BMC Genetics in 2014 and became the Section Editor of Animal Population Genetics in 2016. He received Ph.D. in Quantitative Genetics from University of Minnesota in 2010. After that, He worked as postdoctoral fellow with Alon Keinan and Andrew Clark in the Department of Biological Statistics and Computational Biology at Cornell University. In 2013, Dr. Ma joined the faculty of the Department of Animal and Avian Sciences at University of Maryland, College Park as Assistant Professor. Dr. Ma's research interest is centered on elucidating the genetic basis of complex traits of animals and humans, which can leads to better understanding of the underlying biology and more accurate prediction of animal performance and disease risks. In particular, he focuses on developing statistical approaches and computing tools to boost the power of current and future sequencing-based studies, including genome-wide association and genomic selection/prediction studies.
Complex traits and quantitative genetics
James Reecy, Professor of Animal Science, joined the faculty of Iowa State University in February of 1999. He received a B.S. degree from South Dakota State University; a M.S. degree from the University of Missouri, Columbia; and a Ph.D. degree from Purdue University. During his career, Dr. Reecy has worked on problems in ruminant nutrition, skeletal muscle growth and development, embryonic heart development, beef and mouse molecular and quantitative genetics, and livestock bioinformatics. Currently, his lab works on beef cattle molecular genetics with a focus on improving the nutrient content of beef and health of cattle. Dr. Reecy currently is the NRSP-8 database coordinator, where he leads national efforts to improve the computational resources available for genomics research on livestock species. In addition, he is the director of the Office of Biotechnology, which facilitates biotechnology research at Iowa State University.
Human population genetics
Dr. Shuhua Xu is professor of human population genetics and Principal Investigator of Population Genomics Group at the CAS-MPG Partner Institute for Computational Biology. He is currently holding the position of Max-Planck Independent Research Group Leader and a Distinguished Adjunct Professorship at ShanghaiTech University. He received his PhD at Fudan University, China. The Population Genomics Group led by Dr. Xu is using computational approaches and developing new methods to dissect genetic architecture of human populations, quantitatively characterize their admixture features, and reveal their migration history and adaptive divergence. Dr. Xu has authored many scientific papers published in Science, PNAS, The American Journal of Human Genetics, Genome Research, Molecular Biology and Evolution, Human Molecular Genetics, the PLoS and the BMC series. Dr. Xu serves as Editorial Board member of several international peer-reviewed journals such as Hereditas, Human Genomics, Molecular Genetics and Genomics, Scientific Reports, and BMC Genetics.