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May E. Montasser, PhD

Academic Title:

Adjunct Assistant Professor

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Education and Training

Dr. Montasser received her PhD at the Human Genetic Center, University of Texas, School of Public Health, where she also spent a year as a postdoctoral fellow. She then pursued a second postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Maryland, School of Medicine and joined its Faculty in 2012.


Dr. Montasser's research focuses on applying genetic epidemiology and statistical genetics to identify the genetic components of complex diseases. She has more than 10 years of experience working across the spectrum of human genetics data including family, cohort and case-control studies in ethnically diverse populations, using study designs ranging from linkage and candidate gene association studies to genome wide association and whole exome and whole genome sequencing studies. Dr. Montasser’s research in the field of lipid genetics led to the identification of 2 novel associations on chromosome 5 and chromosome 9 highlighting new biology. She is also interested in pharmacogenetics where she investigated the effect of using CYP2C19 genotype in determining the choice of antiplatelet medication on the risk of major adverse cardiovascular events after Percutaneous Coronary Intervention, and is currently working in a project that aims to identify the genetic determinants of response to sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 inhibitors (SGLT2). Among other projects, she is working with the CHARGE consortium in performing epigenome wide association studies to understand the epigenetic role in several traits such as lipids, blood pressure and diabetes related traits. She is also investigating the role of epigenetic changes in the development of impaired fasting glucose using a longitudinal Amish data to differentiate between the factors that may lead to impaired fasting glucose versus those that may be a consequence of this condition. Dr. Montasser is an active contributor in several large consortia including the NHLBI-funded Trans-Omics for Precision Medicine (TOPMed) program.

Research/Clinical Keywords

genetic epidemiology , statistical genetics, GWAS, WGS, WES, phenotype-genotype association, epigenetic, pharmacogenetics

Highlighted Publications

Complete List of Published Work in MyBibliography