Wesley Warren, professor in the Division of Animal Sciences, won the 2022 Distinguished Research Award as part of this year’s Celebration of Excellence awards ceremony, held April 19. Warren is also part of the Department of Surgery in the School of Medicine and Institute of Data Sciences and Informatics. He is a global leader in the field of comparative genomics with 28 years of impactful research initiatives in both the biopharmaceutical industry and academia. Since coming to MU in 2018, Warren has obtained and carried forward NIH, NSF, USDA and other foundation grants totaling over $1.4 million.
His scientific journey started with basic animal physiology and has progressed to whole-genome analysis of a broad spectrum of species. In the field of primate genomics, he has led or co-led teams that have produced draft assemblies and their genomic themed interpretation of chimpanzees, orangutan, marmoset, gibbon, tarsier and African green monkey. Warren co-led the first whole genome analysis of a bird, the chicken, published in Nature. Continuing the lead in avian genomics, he led an international consortium to publish in Nature the first songbird genome, zebra finch.
“Wes’ efforts have been critical to major advances in our understanding of the content, function and evolution of the genomes of mammals,” said Jeffery Rogers, Human Genome Sequencing Center. “Wes is an outstanding and enjoyable collaborator.”
“Wes is an expert and one of the world’s leading authorities on vertebrate genome assembly and comparative genomics,” said William Murphy, James E. Womack University professor at Texas A&M University. “I cannot think of another individual who has played such a profoundly influential role in the study of vertebrate genomes.”