Genetics Experts

Ed Louis

Department of Genetics and Genome Biology
University of Leicester
United Kingdom


PhD I grew up in upstate New York and spent most of my time outdoors. I left the metropolis of Holland Patent (population 357) to study Biology and Mathematics at Clarkson University. My PhD in Genetics (1986) followed at the University of California at Berkeley where I studied the ‘Population Genetics of Complex Human Traits’. I moved into yeast at Brandeis University as a postdoc and then in 1991, as part of the reverse brain drain, I moved to the Institute of Molecular Medicine in Oxford as a Wellcome Trust Senior Research Fellow in Basic Biomedical Sciences, where I continued using yeast to study telomeres, genome stability and evolution as well as develop tools for analysing telomeres from various parasites. After a brief stint as an Oxford Don I was rescued from an expanding waistline due to lunch at college by appointment as Professor of Genetics at the University of Leicester in 2000. In 2005 I was temporarily wooed away to the University of Nottingham as Professor of Genome Dynamics. Eight years to the day (1st of April 2013), I returned to Leicester as Director of the Centre for Genetic Architecture of Complex Traits (GACT).

Research Interest

My research has focused on genetic variation and genome stability in yeast with a particular interest in the ends of the chromosomes or subtelomeres. This has developed in several directions over the years and has included: reproductive isolation and speciation in yeast, chromosome evolution in yeast, genome stability in various mutant backgrounds, telomeres without telomerase, subtelomeres in parasites, genome dynamics over many time scales, population genomics and phenotypic variation and most recently in the quantitative genetic analysis of complex traits.


  • Vasil Raykov, Marcus E. Marvin, Edward J. Louis, Laura Maringele. 2016. Telomere Dysfunction Triggers Palindrome Formation Independently of Double Strand-Break Repair Mechanisms. Genetics 203: 1659–1668, DOI: 10.1534/genetics.115.183020

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