Sarah S. Murray, Ph.D.

Patricia Kopko, M.D.

  • Professor
  • Director of Genomic Technologies
  • M.S., University of Pittsburgh
  • Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh
  • Postdoctoral Training: Case Western Reserve University

Research Interests

Dr. Murray’s research interests focus on bringing genomics tools into the clinic to improve patient care. DNA sequencing technologies have rapidly evolved in recent years, and the cost of sequencing targeted regions of the genome, whole exomes, and even whole genomes have drastically fallen so that it is now feasible to generate DNA sequence and capture the underlying variation at these large scales. The use of this information can be used in a clinical setting in many ways. For example, knowledge of DNA variation in an individual or their tumor can aid in identifying the most likely efficacious therapies or yield insights into prognosis. Alternatively, DNA sequencing can aid in the diagnosis of an individual’s disease by identifying genetic mutations to better understand disease etiology. Dr. Murray’s research interests focus on how current genomic technologies can be used to achieve these goals.

Representative Publications

  1. Murray SS, Smith EN, Villarasa N, Nahey T, Lande J, Goldberg H, Shaw M, Rosenthal L, Ramza B, Alaeddini J, Han S, Damani S, Soykan O, Kowal RC, Topol EJ. Genome-wide Association of Implantable Cardioverter-Defibrillator Activation With Life-Threatening Arrhythmias. PLoS ONE, 7(1):e25387, 2012.
  2. Smith EN, Chen W, Kähönen M, Kettunen J, Lehtimäki T, Peltonen L, Raitakari OT, Salem RM, Schork NJ, Shaw M, Srinivasan SR, Topol EJ, Viikari JS, Berenson GS, Murray SS. Longitudinal Genome-Wide Association of Cardiovascular Disease Risk Factors in The Bogalusa Heart Study. PLoS Genetics, 6(9);e1001094, 2010.
  3. Ng PC, Murray SS, Levy S, Venter JC. A personalized medicine research agenda. Nature, 461: 724-726, 2009.
  4. Frazer KA, Murray SS, Schork NJ, Topol EJ. Human Genetic Variation and its contribution to complex traits. Nature Reviews Genetics, 10:241-251, 2009.
  5. Eberle MA, Ng PC, Kuhn K, Zhou L, Peiffer DA, Galver L, Viaud-Martinez KA, Taylor C, Gunderson KL, Shen R, Murray SS. Power to Detect Risk Alleles Using Genome-Wide Tag SNP Panels. PLoS Genetics, 3(10):1827-1837, 2007
  6. Murray SS, Oliphant A, Shen R, McBride C, Steeke RJ, Shannon SG, Rubano T, Kermani BG, Fan J-B, Chee MS, Hansen MST. A highly informative SNP linkage panel for human genetic studies. Nature Methods, 1: 113-117, 2004.
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Dr. Murray is Director of Genomic Technologies at UC San Diego’s Center for Advanced Laboratory Medicine (CALM) and Professor in the Department of Pathology. At the CALM, Dr. Murray is involved with the development of advanced genomic technologies for the clinical lab, and oversees the bioinformatics and analysis of genomic data. Prior to coming to UCSD, she was a founding member of the Scripps Translational Science Institute, serving as the institute’s Director of Genetics, as well as Associate Professor of Translational Genomics at The Scripps Research Institute. While at Scripps, Dr. Murray directed a high-throughput genotyping and sequencing laboratory aimed at discovering genetic components of various diseases and health, and determining risk profiles based on combinations of specific risk alleles in large prospective studies. From 2003-2007, Dr. Murray was the chief geneticist at Illumina, a San Diego genomics biotech company, where she played a large role in developing the content and design strategy for numerous whole genome genotyping arrays that enabled large-scale genome-wide genetic studies. Dr. Murray has a long history in both theoretical and applied genetics research. She has published over 90 articles in the human genetics literature that focus on the discovery and analysis of DNA sequence polymorphism. Dr. Murray received her Ph.D. from the University of Pittsburgh’s Department of Human Genetics, and was a postdoctoral fellow at Case Western Reserve’s Department of Genetics. Dr. Murray also has a M.S. degree in genetic counseling from the University of Pittsburgh.

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