Brian O’Roak, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Oregon Health & Science UniversityWebsite
Brian O’Roak’s career has focused on developing a “gene-first” approach by implementing new research paradigms and technologies that challenge the genetic intractability of neurodevelopmental conditions, especially ASD. This approach seeks to use the power of human genetics to make unbiased discoveries into the key molecular mechanisms that drive the development of these disorders. With this knowledge, O’Roak’s team seeks to discover what these risk genes do biologically, when and where in development they function, how mutations affect these processes and how diverse risk genes interact and can be targeted therapeutically. His team currently utilizes multidisciplinary approaches in these efforts including, genomics, developmental neuroscience, genetic models and induced pluripotent stem cell technologies.