Meet a PennMedicine Researcher

Benjamin F. Voight, PhD

Benjamin F. Voight, PhD

Benjamin F. Voight, PhD, Associate Professor of Pharmacology, is the winner of this year’s Michael S. Brown New Investigator Research Award, which recognizes emerging faculty investigators engaged in innovative discoveries.

Dr. Voight is a human statistical and population geneticist whose work focuses on understanding the evolutionary and genetic basis of complex human disease, with the long-term goal of identifying novel gene targets for therapeutics. He is recognized as a pioneer and leader in applying Mendelian Randomization approaches to perform causal inference studies between genetically heritable biomarkers and complex diseases. He is a highly regarded population geneticist, whose work has led the field in developing statistical models that capture two fundamental forces that shape populations:  mutation and purifying selection. His findings in this area represent a substantial advance for the field and have profound implications for evolutionary genetics studies. He is also recognized for his work to genetically dissect cardiometabolic disease, specifically type-2 diabetes and coronary heart disease. Dr. Voight’s willingness to follow scientific leads into new experimental areas, to establish promising collaborations, and to push translational science forward demonstrate him to be on a sustained career trajectory of important, significant long-term impact.