[Alumni Highlight] Dr. Tiffany Oliver, Geneticist

Tiffany Oliver, Ph.D.

B.S. (Biology) Tennessee State University
Ph.D. (Genetics and Molecular Biology)  Emory University
Foundations in Research and Science Teaching (FIRST) Postdoctoral Fellow Department of Human Genetics, Emory University

Meiotic chromosome mal-segregation, henceforth referred to as nondisjunction (NDJ), is the leading cause of spontaneous abortion and mental impairment, the consequences of which can have long-lasting adverse health-related consequences.  Unfortunately, the risk for meiotic chromosome mal-segregation increases for women as they age, this phenomenon is known as the maternal age effect. 

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The molecular biology underlying the maternal age effect has not been well characterized, however, age-related changes in reproductive hormone expression are hypothesized to play a role. 

In my research approach, we are using a micro array-based approach to characterize changes in gene expression within oocytes that are elicited by age- related changes in reproductive hormone expression.  It is expected that will enable us to understand the molecular biology underlying the maternal age effect. 

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