Mark Kos Ph.D.

Faculty Profile Picture

Assistant Professor of Research

South Texas Diabetes and Obesity Institute

School of Medicine

Office: San Antonio Technology Center, Room 320.07
3463 Magic Drive
San Antonio, TX  78229
Phone: +1 (210)-585-9772
Email: mark.kos@utrgv.edu

Education

2008 Ph.D. Biological Anthropology, University of Kansas, Kansas, USA
2006 M.A. Anthropology, University of Kansas, Kansas, USA

Research Focus

Dr. Kos’ research interests are predominantly in statistical genetics, epidemiology, and the genetics of complex traits. Dr. Kos has been investigating the genetic underpinnings of schizophrenia (SZ) and neurocognitive correlates in multiplex families and case-control subjects, with particular interest in the dopamine (DA) hypothesis that attributes SZ symptoms to hyperactive dopaminergic neurotransmission. Based on whole transcriptome sequence data, the effects of DA on gene expression is being examined in ex vivo models of lymphoblastoid cell lines from the Molecular Genetics of Schizophrenia (MGS) collaboration. DA-stimulated responses have been detected in gene expression levels, including significant changes in genome-wide co-expression networks related to translational machinery and mitochondrial energy production that exhibit heightened risk for SZ upon cellular perturbation. These findings demonstrate the utility of this novel study design for revealing latent pathological mechanisms that may be undetectable using more traditional approaches.

In addition, Dr. Kos has begun a new collaborative research project with Dr. Melanie Carless at Texas Biomedical Research Institute in San Antonio examining the epigenetics of energy homeostasis, body composition, and obesity in high-risk Hispanic children through next generation sequencing of DNA methylation sites in peripheral blood samples from the Viva la Familia cohort. DNA methylation signatures that are found to be associated with energy homeostasis and obesity will be further assessed for their potential effects on cellular respiration, glycolysis, and fatty acid oxidation through CRISPR-based epigenetic editing of induced pluripotent stem cells.

Extramural Appointments

    
  • Review Editor, Frontiers in Applied Genetic Epidemiology Journal

Publication Highlights

Recent Publications

Book Chapters

  • Almasy L, Kos MZ, Blangero J. Linkage mapping: Localizing the genes that shape human variation. Pp. 33-52. In: Genome Mapping and Genomics in Human and Non-Human Primates. R Duggirala, L Almasy, S Williams-Blangero, S Paul, C Kole (eds), Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg. 2015.

Journal Articles

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Manuscript Review

  • Frontiers in Genetics

  • Genetic Analysis Workshop 20

  • Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA)

  • Schizophrenia Bulletin

Collaborating Institutions

  • Indiana University School of Medicine

  • Texas Biomedical Research Institute

  • Washington University School of Medicine

  • Rutgers University    

  • University of Pennsylvania

  • Yale University School of Medicine

  • State University of New York

  • University of Pittsburgh

  • University of Chicago