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Investigate the molecular impact of the genome-wide significant risk genes associated with autism spectrum disorder (ASD)

1990 …2024

Research activity per year

Personal profile


I am the lead of the functional genomics lab within the Turner Institute for Brain and Mental Health (School of Psychological Sciences) and a molecular geneticist with long experience in psychiatry/mental health research. The focus of my research has been the identification of susceptibility loci for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Throughout my career in the field of psychiatric genetics, I have successfully identified risk loci (genes) for ADHD using the candidate approach (Hawi et al, 2002; Mol Psychiatry; Hawi et al, 2003; Mol Psychiatry; Sheehan et al 2005; Mol Psychiatry). More recently, I have mapped a novel locus for ADHD using the method of genome wide association (GWA) (Hawi et al, 2018; Translational Psychiatry). I have also published the first paper to apply whole exome sequencing to discover risk loci for ADHD (Hawi et al, 2017; Mol Psychiatry).  As member of the ADHD subgroup of the Psychiatric Genetic Consortium (PGC) I have contributed to the identification of 12 novel risk loci for ADHD using GWAS, recently published in Nature Genetics (2019).


Since my relocation to the School of Psychological Sciences at Monash University (July 2012), I have been contributing to the development of genetic research projects by training staff from different groups including Huntington’s disease, Sleep, Aging and Neurodegeneration, and cognitive control of action research, and have worked closely with my peers within the Turner Institute for Braun and mental Health. I have a strong record of successful HD students (Honours, MSc and Ph.D.) who I have supervised throughout my career. I have dedicated my life to research, discovery, teaching and will continue to do so.


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Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being

Education/Academic qualification

Molecular Medical Genetics, PhD, Newcastle University (United Kingdom)

Award Date: 22 Dec 1994

Biochemical Genetics, Masters, University of Strathclyde

Award Date: 18 Dec 1989

Biology, Honours, University of Baghdad

Award Date: 2 Jun 1982

Research area keywords

  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
  • Autism spectrum disorders
  • Cognitive genetics of attention deficit
  • Genetic risk
  • cellular modelling
  • DNA editing

Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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