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University of California, San Francisco
675 Nelson Rising Lane
San Francisco, CA 94158
UCSF Psychiatry Website
Institute for Neurodegenerative Diseases (IND)
Willsey Lab Website

   UCSF logo
Principal Investigator
Matthew W. State MD, PhD
Oberndorf Family Distinguished Professor
Chair, UCSF Department of Psychiatry
Director, Langley Porter Psychiatric Institute and Hospital
Phone: 415-476-7730
 State Matthew2
Principal Investigator
Arthur Jeremy Willsey, PhD
Assistant Professor, Institute for Neurodegenerative Diseases (IND) and UCSF Department of Psychiatry
Phone: 415-502-2503
Co-Investigator and Korea Site Principal Investigator:
Young Shin Kim, MD, MS, MPH, PhD
Associate Professor of Child Study Center
Phone: 203-785-2198
 Kim Young-Shin

Institute Description

The University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), one of the ten campuses of the University of California, is devoted solely to graduate education and research in the health sciences. UCSF is composed of the Schools of Medicine, Dentistry, Pharmacy, and Nursing, and the Graduate Division. In both size and number of students, UC San Francisco is the smallest of the UC campuses. Nevertheless, its relative size belies its distinction as one of the leading biomedical research and health science education centers in the world. In addition, UCSF is a major health care delivery center in northern California with a high volume of regional, national, and international patient referrals.

The UCSF Department of Psychiatry is among the nation’s foremost resources in the fields of child, adolescent, adult mental health. Psychiatry faculty members are recognized for their leadership roles in state-of-the-art, comprehensive and compassionate patient care, pioneering research, excellence in training the next generation of leaders, advancing public policy to advance mental health, and commitment to diversity. Department programs are active at all major UCSF campuses.

Short profile of group

Matthew State received his MD from Stanford University, completed a residency in psychiatry and fellowship in child psychiatry at UCLA, and earned a PhD in genetics from Yale University, where he joined the faculty in 2001. In 2013, he moved to UCSF as the Oberndorf Family Distinguished Professor and Chair of the Department of Psychiatry. Dr. State’s lab studies the genetics and genomics of childhood neuropsychiatric disorders. He co-leads several international genomics collaborations, including the NIH-funded Autism Sequencing Consortium and has been the recipient of multiple awards, including recent induction into the Institute of Medicine and The AACAP George Tarjan Award for Contributions in Developmental Disabilities.

Dr. Jeremy Willsey, PhD, is an Assistant Professor in the Institute for Neurodegenerative Diseases (IND) and the Department of Psychiatry at the UCSF Weill Institute for Neurosciences. Dr. Willsey is on the TIC Genetics Executive Steering Committee and leads the Statistical analysis group.

As part if TIC Genetics, Dr. Willsey has co-lef the first two large-scale whole exome sequencing studies in Tourette Disorder (TD). The first study described, for the first time, the association of de novo sequence variants with TD, establishing them as bona fide risk factors (Willsey et al., Neuron 2017). This study also identified the first high confidence TD gene, WWC1, and established that, like in other early-onset neuropsychiatric disorders, the identification of recurrent de novo variants within the same gene is a viable path forward for gene discovery. The second study characterized a larger cohort and resulted in the identification of an additional high confidence gene, CELSR3, several new probable TD genes, and the establishment of de novo structural variants as risk factors for TD (Wand et al., Cells Report 2018). This paper also further clarified our understanding of the genetics of TD by providing evidence for a ‘female protective effect’ and differing genetic architecture in simplex versus multiplex TD. Finally, integrated analysis determined that genes involved in “cell polarity” tend to be disrupted in patients, generating key hypothesis being followed up by TIC Genetics.

Dr. Willsey continues to co-lead ongoing genetic analyses as well as new functional genetics and systems biological efforts using these genetic findings to understand the biological underpinnings of TD.

Dr. Young Shin Kim is a child and adolescent psychiatrist, psychiatric epidemiologist, genetic epidemiologist and an Associate Professor at the Yale Child Study Center. She is an independent researcher funded by private foundations and federal government agencies. Her work is focused on the exploration of the distribution of childhood onset neuropsychiatric disorders and disruptive behavioral problems including autism, tic disorders and bullying, and on the understanding of the causes of these conditions, including genetics and environmental risk factors as well as their interactions.