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Noncoding regulatory variants play a central role in the genetics of human diseases and in evolution. We measured allele-specific TF binding affinity of three liver-specific TFs between crosses of two inbred mouse strains to elucidate the regulatory mechanisms underlying transcription factor (TF) binding variations in mammals. Our results highlight the pre-eminence of cis-acting variants on TF occupancy divergence. I will further discuss current and future research directions involving evolutionary comparison of development time points across metazoans as well as work on understanding the role of natural selection at regulatory variants in human traits and diseases.

Emily has a degree BSc (Hons) at the University of New South Wales, majoring in Biology. After a Masters degree in Bioinformatics at the University of Sydney, Emily undertook her PhD in Comparative Genomics at the Faculty of Veterinary Sciences. After a brief period at the Institute for Molecular Biosciences, Emily was recruited to the lab of Paul Flicek at the European Bioinformatics Institute (EMBL-EBI), Cambridge, UK, where she researched regulatory genomics using mouse models. Earlier this year, Emily returned to Australia to take up an ARC DECRA Fellowship at the School of Biological Science at the University of Queensland. Broadly, her work aims to understand the impact of non-coding variation in regulatory evolution. Emily has been supported by two EMBO Fellowships and a University of Queensland Fellowship.

Emily Wong is an ARC Early Career Fellow from the University of Queensland.