Derek Symula

Clinical researcher leads proficiency testing program at Wadsworth Center

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Derek Symula

Clinical Assistant Professor
School of Public Health
Department: Biomedical Sciences

Human genome; diagnostic tools in gene testing

Campus phone: (518) 473-7553
Campus email:


Clinical Assistant Professor of Biomedical Sciences Derek Symula oversees the Proficiency Testing Program at the Wadsworth Center.

Symula researches human genome testing, including for diseases such as HIV as well as autism spectrum disorders (ASDs).

As part of this research, Symula's team is working on a project related to copy number variants (CNVs). Several CNVs have been identified that are associated with increased ASD risk. Such CNVs can be used for diagnosis, for example, to discriminate among the different classifications within the autism spectrum, and to identify the causative genes within the CNV regions. As the CNVs associated with ASDs thus far account for a small part of ASD genetic risk and few candidate genes have been robustly tested, his team aims to identify new CNVs and test candidate genes within CNV regions.