Department of Genetics, University of Pennsylvania

Who we are


Christopher Brown PhD, Associate Professor

Casey received his B.S. in Biochemistry at the University of Nebraska. He was a graduate student in the Genetics Department at Stanford University. He conducted his post-doctoral research in Human Genetics at the University of Chicago. He moved to Philadelphia in 2013 and has never seen so many pretzels. He is interested in understanding the role of gene expression variation in complex human phenotypes and insists that his lab be in control of both the means of data production and analysis. A recentish CV is here.

Shweta Ramdas, Post-Doctoral fellow

Shweta received a bachelor's in Computational Biology from the National University of Singapore. She completed her Ph.D in Bioinformatics from the University of Michigan in 2018, where she worked on the genomics of complex traits with Jun Li. Her current research is focused on characterizing the regulatory architectures of disease-associated loci in the human genome.

Katerina Gawronski, Graduate student

Katerina received her B.S. in Neuroscience From the University of Michigan in 2015, where she worked in the lab of Margit Burmeister. She is now jointly advised by Casey and Ben Voight. Her research is focused on developing computational and experimental methods to characterize the contribution of post transcriptional regulation to human complex complex trait variation.

Brandon Wenz, Graduate student

Brandon received his B.S. in Biology from Temple University in 2014. He previously worked as a research technician in the lab of Kate Nathanson. His research is focused on identifying and functionally characterizing causal variants for coronary artery disease and other liver-related traits.

Elizabeth Burton, Graduate student

Elizabeth received her B.S. in Biochemistry and Molecular biology and B.A. in Music from Gettysburg College in 2018, where she worked in the labs of Veronique Delesalle and Steven James. She is jointly mentored by both Casey and Struan Grant at CHOP. Her research is focused on identifying causal variants implicated by GWAS in Alzheimer’s Disease and other neurodegenerative diseases.

Grace Babcock, Research Specialist

Grace Babcock graduated from Temple University in 2009 with a B.A. in Anthropology and spent the spent the following three years working as a Research Specialist in the Penn Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics. She obtained an M.P.H. from Penn in 2015.


Marco Trizzino Ph.D., Post-doctoral fellow

Marco obtained his B.S. in Biology from Bicocca University in Milan. Then he earned an M.S. in Evolutionary Biology and a Ph.D. in Animal Biology at Sapienza University, Rome. Marco's research in the lab was focused on regulatory, gene expression, and epigenomic evolution in primates. Marco is now working as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at Jefferson University. Visit Marco’s lab webpage here.

Minal Caliskan Ph.D., Post-doctoral fellow

Minal obtained a B.S. in Molecular Biology and Genetics from Boğaziçi University (2007). She completed her Ph.D. in Human Genetics at the University of Chicago (2013), where she worked on genotype by environment interactions that influence asthma and gene expression under the supervision of Dr. Carole Ober. Minal's research in the Brown lab focused on epigenetic fine-mapping of complex trait associated loci in the human liver. She was supported by a Penn IBI fellowship, was a semi-finalist for the Charles J. Epstein trainee award, and was awarded the the ASHG Cotterman Award in 2019. She is now a human geneticist at Bristol-Myers Squibb.

YoSon Park Ph.D., Post-doctoral fellow

YoSon earned a B.S. in Microbiology and Immunology as well as a Ph.D. in Human Genetics from the University of Miami. As a Ph.D. student she worked with Dr. Margaret Pericak-Vance, developing and applying methods to understand the genetic basis of neuropsychiatric phenotypes. YoSon's research focused on characterizing the causal role of regulatory variation in human complex traits. She is now a post-doctoral fellow with Casey Greene at Penn.

Katherine Aracena, PREP scholar

Katie received a B.A. in Biology from the University of Virginia in 2016, where she worked in the lab of Dr. Benjamin Blackman. From 2016 to 2017, Katie was a PREP scholar in the Brown lab. Her research focused on functionally characterizing human specific cis-regulatory elements in the liver. She is now a Ph.D. student in the lab of Luis Barreiro in the Department of Human Genetics at the University of Chicago.

Julian Segert, PREP scholar

Julian obtained a B.A. in Biology from Swarthmore College in 2017. He completed his honor's thesis research in the Brown lab and has continued on in the lab as a post-baccalaureate student in Penn's PREP program. His research focused on identifying genetic variants associated with histone modification state in the liver. He is now a Ph.D. student in the Biological and Biomedical Sciences graduate program at Harvard University.

Eric Mendoza, SUIP scholar

Eric was a Penn SUIP scholar in 2019. Eric's research focused on identifying causal regulatory variants that underlie complex trait variation. He is currently an undergraduate at Rutgers University.

Interested in joining our team? Contact Casey and we can talk shop.