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Jen C. Wang, PhD

Current Position
Research Associate Professor of Psychiatry

University Roles

Education and Training

Areas of Research Interests
Main focus is the molecular genetics of substance abuse. We have identified genetic loci that influence risk for alcohol dependence, nicotine dependence., and lung cancer. We are currently pursuing functional studies to further understand the mechanisms of these genetic loci in determining drinking, smoking and lung cancer risk.

Key Publications
Wang JC*, Foroud T*, Hinrichs AL* et al. Genome wide association study of alcohol dependence symptom counts in extended pedigrees identifies C15orf53. Molecular Psychiatry (2012). 23 October 2012; doi: 10.1038/mp.2012.143. NIHMSID:466495

Wang JC, Kapoor M, Goate AM. The Genetics of substance dependence. Annual Review of Genomics and Human Genetics. (2012) 13:241-261. PMCID: PMC3474605

Wang JC, Grucza RA, Cruchaga C, Hinrichs AL, Bertelsen S, Budde JP, Fox L, Goldstein E, Reyes O, Saccone NL, Saccone SF, Xuei X, Bulzhol K, Kuperman S, Nurnberger J, Rice JP, Schuckit M, Tischfield JA, Hesselbrock V, Porjesz B, Edenberg HJ, Bierut LJ, Goate AM. Genetic variation in the CHRNA5 gene affects mRNA levels and is associated with risk for alcohol dependence. Mol Psychiatry (2009) 14:501-510

Wang JC, Cruchaga C, Saccone NL, Bertelsen S, Liu P, Budde JP, Duan W, Fox L, Grucza RA, Kern J, Mayo K, Reyes O, Rice J, Saccone SF, Spiegel N, Steinbach JH, Stitzel JA, Anderson MW, You M, Stevens VL, Bierut LJ, Goate AM. COGEND collaborators and GELCC collaborators. Risk for nicotine dependence and lung cancer is conferred by mRNA expression levels and amino acid change in CHRNA5. Hum Mol Genet (2009) 18:3125-3135.

Kang SJ, Rangaswamy M, Manz N, Wang JC, Wetherill L, Hinrichs T, Almasy L, Brooks A, Chorlian DB, Dick D, Hesselbrock V, Kramer J, Kuperman S, Nurnberger J, Rice J, Schuckit M, Tischfield J, Bierut LJ, Edenberg HJ, Goate A, Foroud T, Porjesz B. Family-based genome-wide association study of frontal theta oscillations identifies potassium channel gene KCNJ6. Genes Brain Behav (2012) doi: 10.1111/j.1601-183X.2012.00803.x.  Full Article ->

Harari O, Wang JC, Bucholz K, Edenberg HJ, Heath A, Martin NG, Pergadia ML, Montgomery G, Schrage A, Bierut LJ, Madden PF, Goate AM. Pathway analysis of smoking quantity in multiple GWAS identifies cholinergic and sensory pathways. PLoS ONE (2012) 7(12): e50913. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0050913. PMCID: PMC3515482

Funded Research Projects
NIAAA (SUNY) (Key Personnel):Collaborative Study on the Genetics of Alcoholism

NIDA (Key Personnel):The Genetics of Vulnerability to Nicotine Addictions

NIDA (Key Personnel):The Collaborative Genetic Study of Nicotine Dependence