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Qing Alison YAO

Alison Yao
Title: Program Director
Office(s): Division of Neuroscience (DN)
Email Address:


Alison Yao, Ph.D., is a Program Director in the Population Studies and Genetics Branch in the Division of Neuroscience. Dr. Yao oversees and directs research on functional genomics of Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias. Before joining NIA, Dr. Yao was a program officer at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) for more than 10 years. During her tenure at NIAID, she developed and oversaw a number of genomics research programs, including functional genomics, structural genomics, bioinformatics, and genomic centers for infectious diseases. She was a co-lead for the NIH Data Science initiative on biomedical data indexing and discovery. Prior to joining NIAID, Dr. Yao was a staff scientist at Celera Genomics, where she developed algorithms for human genome annotation and contributed to projects in genome mapping and assembly, comparative genomics, and database design. Dr. Yao received her B.S. in genetics and M.S. in genetics from Wuhan University, China, and her Ph.D. in molecular genetics from the University of Guelph, Canada.

Research Interests/Portfolio

  • Functional genomics of Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias
  • Molecular and cellular mechanisms driven by genetic and genomic factors in Alzheimer's and related dementias
  • Functional roles of noncoding RNAs, transposable elements, and somatic mosaicisms contributing to Alzheimer's disease heterogeneity and pathogenesis

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