Pacific Center for Genome Research

Many diseases show disparities across different racial and ethnic groups, including Native Hawaiians (NHs). The etiology of many human diseases is not fully understood, although substantial research has supported that both germline level and somatic level changes could be related to disease development and prognosis. Besides genomics, other layers of omics including epigenome could contribute to disease risk and prognosis across ethnic groups. We established a multicomponent center, Pacific Center for Genome Research (PCGR), that enables multidisciplinary research with the thematic focus of Genome Research, which will encompass the interface between genome research and positive human health outcomes. Our Center is one of only two full-scale Diversity Centers for Genome Research supported by the NIH U54 Center Grant (five-year, $11-million) across the entire US in 2023.

We support a multi-investigator, interdisciplinary team to develop two interrelated and highly innovative genomic research projects, along with Administrative Core, Genomic Workforce Development Core, and Community Engagement Core. Our two projects address critical issues in genomics including: methods development; genomics of disease; genomic data science and computational genomics; and genomics and health equity. Along with its scientific goals, the PCGR will substantially expand the pool of diverse genomic scientists and researchers at University of Hawaiʻi (UH) who can perform innovative genomics research by providing didactic, practicum and research activities and experiences that are aligned with the research projects. Participation of underrepresented populations and engagement of underserved communities that experience health disparities (including NHs) will be increased in genomics research, to achieve tangible health benefits for all.

The PCGR will substantially foster UH’s excellence in genome research, genomic workforce career development, and community engagement, which will benefit Hawaiʻi and the rest of the US.

Principal Investigators/Directors

Lang Wu
Lang Wu, PhD
Contact PI and PCGR Director

Youping Deng
Youping Deng, PhD
MPI and PCGR Co-Director

This Center is supported by the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI) and National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD) through grant 1U54HG013243.