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The William Harvey Research Institute - Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry

Dr Loukas Moutsianas


Senior Lecturer



I am a computational geneticist with a background in complex trait genetics.

I got my D.Phil. from the University of Oxford where I worked on the association of the Major Histocompatibility Complex with complex autoimmune disease. Prior to that, I completed a 5-year degree in Computer Engineering & Informatics at the University of Patras, Greece, followed by an MPhil in Computational Biology at the University of Cambridge.

My post-doctoral work at the Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics in Oxford focused on the analysis of high throughput sequencing data in a case-control association setting, as a member of the GoT2D (Genetics of T2 Diabetes) consortium. I subsequently joined the Wellcome Sanger Institute where I worked on several projects, primarily on Inflammatory Bowel Disease and Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis, using whole-genome sequencing data and genotyping assays. I joined the William Harvey Research Institute in September 2018, and I am seconded to Genomics England where I lead the Bioinformatics Research Services team.


My research interests lie broadly in the development and application of statistical methodology and computational tools to elucidate the association between genetic variation and human disease, with an emphasis in immune-mediated disease. I aspire to contribute to the translation of such associations and other genomic information into an improved understanding of the mechanisms underlying such traits, and ultimately to actionable insights to patients’ benefit.

Key Publications

  • Sazonovs A, Kennedy NA, Moutsianas L, Cavounidis A, Fachal L, et al. 2020. HLA-DQA1* 05 carriage associated with development of anti-drug antibodies to infliximab and adalimumab in patients with Crohn’s disease. 2020. Gastroenterology 158(1):189-199. PMID: 31600487
  • de Lange KM*, Moutsianas L*, Lee JC*, Lamb CA, Luo Y, et al. Genome-wide association study implicates immune activation of multiple integrin genes in inflammatory bowel disease. 2017. Nature Genetics, 49:256-261. PMID: 28067908.
  • Moutsianas L*, Jostins L*, Beecham AH*, Dilthey AT, Xifara DK, et al. Class II HLA interactions modulate genetic risk for Multiple Sclerosis. 2015. Nature Genetics, 47(10):1107-13. PMID: 26343388
  • Moutsianas L*, Agarwala V*, Fuchsberger C, Flannick J, Rivas, MA, et al. The power of gene-based rare variant methods to detect disease-associated variation and test hypotheses about complex disease. 2015. PloS Genetics, 11(4):e1005165. PMID: 25906071
  • Moutsianas L, and Morris AP. Methodology for the analysis of rare genetic variation in genome-wide association and re-sequencing studies of complex human traits. 2014. Briefings in Functional Genomics 13(5):362-370. PMID: 24916163
  • Ayub Q*, Moutsianas L*, Chen Y, Panoutsopoulou K, Colonna V, et al. Revisiting the thrifty gene hypothesis using 65 Type 2 Diabetes susceptibility loci. 2014. American Journal of Human Genetics 94(2):176-85. PMID: 24412096
  • Sawcer S, Hellenthal G, Pirinen, M, Spencer CC, Patsopoulos NA, Moutsianas L, et al. Genetic risk and a primary role for cell-mediated immune mechanisms in multiple sclerosis. 2011. Nature 476(7359): 214-219. PMID: 21833088
  • Moutsianas L*, Enciso-Mora V*, Ma YP, Leslie S, Dilthey AT, et al. 2011. Multiple Hodgkin lymphoma-associated loci within the HLA region at chromosome 6p21.3. 2011. Blood 118(3): 670-4. PMID: 21596858 

For a full list of publications please see 


Internal: Prof. Sir Mark Caulfield, Prof. Michael Barnes, Dr Arianna Tucci, Dr Anna Need, Dr Damian Smedley

External: Dr Carl Anderson (Wellcome Sanger Institute), Dr Alexander Dilthey (Duesseldorf), Dr Manuel Rivas (Stanford), Dr Luke Jostins (Oxford)

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