Hakon Hakonarson, M.D., Ph.D. is Director of the Center for Applied Genomics and is also an associate professor of pediatrics at The University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. He leads a $40 million commitment from CHOP to genotype approximately 100,000 children, an initiative that has gained nationwide attention in the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Time Magazine, Nature and Science.
Dr. Hakonarson has previously held several senior posts within the biopharmaceutical industry, directing a number of genomics and pharmacogenomics projects as vice president of Clinical Sciences and Development at deCODE genetics, Inc. Dr. Hakonarson has been the principal investigator (PI) on several National Institute of Health-sponsored grants, and is currently co-PI on Neurodevelopmental Genomics: Trajectories of Complex Phenotypes, the largest project ever supported by the National Institute of Mental Health. He has published numerous high-impact papers on genomic discoveries and their translations in some of the most prestigious scientific medical journals, including Nature, Nature Genetics and The New England Journal of Medicine. Time Magazine listed Dr. Hakonarson’s autism gene discovery project, reported in Nature in 2009, among the top 10 medical breakthroughs of that year. With over 12 years of experience in pioneering genomics research and genome-wide mapping and association studies, Dr. Hakonarson has intimate knowledge of the complexities of large-scale genomics projects and has put together the necessary infrastructure and workflow processes to unravel these complexities.