Prof. Jean-Baptise Cazier 


Institute of Cancer and Genomic Sciences

Chair of Bioinformatics

Director of the Centre for Computational Biology

Jean-Baptiste Cazier is a Professor of Bioinformatics with interest across the broad spectrum of Computational and Mathematical modelling of natural phenomena.

He has three main area of interest: Cancer Genetics, Population Genetics, Swarming and Metabonomics.

His life-long goal is to integrate all his eclectic, and ever expending, fields of interest.

Originally trained in mathematical modelling, Jean-Baptiste Cazier worked on various applications of partial differential equations until he reached the area of human genetics. He was introduced to this fast-evolving field in an academic spirit of research and excellence in Iceland at deCode Genetics, developing further methods combining linkage and case-control association to identify genes responsible for common complex diseases. He led a group in charge of diseases from cancer to asthma within the Statistics Department and found success in the association of loci to osteoporosis and prostate cancer, as well as in population genetics.

While employed at the LRI by CRUK, he worked alongside experts in most aspects of bioinformatics and biostatistics in the context of cancer. Simultaneously affiliated with QMUL, he collaborated with scientists and clinicians on genome-wide association, copy number variations or high-throughput sequencing, especially of colorectal cancer and leukaemia which led to the identification of many genomic susceptibility variants conferring higher, susceptibility and progression, risk of various cancers.

Joining the Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics in Oxford, he collaborated with clinicians working on diverse medical conditions from central nervous system to cardiovascular diseases. In this latter context he developed new methods to perform metabonome quantitative trait association using Nuclear Magnetic Resonance profiles in animal models. The human side of the project involved genome-wide association in a Middle Eastern cohort, which required novel population genetics analysis. These further studies in population stratification and admixture mapping to perform more accurate analysis across heterogeneous cohorts led to new analytical methods being developed in collaboration with the Department of Statistics. These developments were made possible thanks to the academic settings with the supervision of DPhil students and postdocs in liaison with their mentors. This broad range of work sometimes leads to the development of interactive tools such as the Genome Recurrent Event ViEwer (GREVE). After serving as joint acting Head of the Bioinformatics and Statistical Genetics Core, Jean-Baptiste headed the Statistical Genetics and Functional Analysis group. He then supervised the development of analytical approaches and tools for the analysis of whole genome sequencing projects (WGS500) with a special focus on immune disorders and cancers. This latest project successfully brings afore new variants functionally associated with the development of diseases.

He then joined the Department of Oncology to create a Bioinformatics group to both provide support to the department and lead independently funded research. He commissioned a dedicated High Performance Computing solution and designed an entire Bioinformatics Course while assembling a world-class team. He continued being involved in the cancer part of the WGS500 by publishing the first tumour-based project, identifying new mutations and clinicopathological associations with mutation burden in Bladder Cancer.

In 2014, Jean-Baptiste Cazier joined the University of Birmingham taking up the new chair of Bioinformatics to create the Centre for Computational Biology. This university-wide effort aims to promote excellence in Computational Biology, Systems Biology, and Bioinformatics across the range of fundamental and applied sciences, in both the University and allied Health Care arenas.

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