Genetics Experts

Dr Celia A. May

Department of Genetics and Genome Biology
University of Leicester
United Kingdom


BSc, PhD I am interested in understanding fundamental processes like mutation and recombination which generate DNA diversity and thus contribute to disease and drive evolution.

Research Interest

My recent research has focussed on homologous recombination, principally within the human pseudoautosomal regions. The major pseudoautosomal region (PAR1) on the short arms of the X and Y chromosome, by virtue of being the largest single region of homology between the two sex chromosomes, is the site of obligatory crossing-over in the male germline. As a consequence, this entire 2.7 Mb interval is a recombinationally “hot” domain and therefore an ideal target for investigating the nature of human meiotic recombination. We are using population-based approaches together with family studies and highly sensitive sperm DNA assays to characterize patterns of both meiotic crossover and gene conversion in this region of the genome.  Failure to recombine here  can result in non-disjunction and has been linked with male infertility.


  • Shanks ME, May CA, Dubrova YE, Balaresque P, Rosser ZH, Adams SM & Jobling MA (2008) Complex germline and somatic mutation processes at a haploid human minisatellite shown by single-molecule analysis Mutation Research 648:46-53.

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