People Detail

Xuexia (Helen) Wang, PhD

Assistant Professor
(414) 227-3350
Zilber 315

PhD, Quantitative Economics, Capital University of Economics and Business, Beijing, China
PhD, Mathematical Sciences, Michigan Technological University, Houghton
MS, Mathematical Sciences, Michigan Technological University, Houghton
MS, Quantitative Economics, Dongbei University of Finance and Economics, Dalian, China
BS, Math Education, Shandong Normal University, Jinan, China


Dr. Xuexia Wang joined the biostatistics faculty in August 2011, after working one year as an assistant research professor at the City of Hope. Her main research area is in statistical genetics. She is interested in developing statistical methods and computational tools to identify genetic variants that influence the susceptibility to complex diseases such as breast cancer, colon/rectum cancer, lung cancer, and prostate cancer.

She has proposed three two-stage approaches to deal with the problem of multiple testing based on nuclear family data; a new association method to test multiple-marker association based on case control data. Local ancestry at a test SNP may confound with the association signal and ignoring it can lead to spurious association. She first demonstrated theoretically that adjustment for local ancestry at the test SNP is sufficient to remove the spurious association regardless of the mechanism of population stratification. Furthermore, she developed two novel powerful association tests adjusting for local ancestry.

Her current research work involves analysis of high-throughput genetics data generated from genome-wide association and next-generation sequencing studies. In particular, she is interested in population- based and family-based genetic association studies for rare and common variants, gene-set and pathway analysis, gene-gene and gene-environment interactions, admixed populations and genetics of gene expression.

In addition to methods development, Dr. Wang is also interested in collaborating with researchers seeking to identify complex disease susceptibility genes. Her collaborative research includes studies of searching genetic susceptibility in the development of breast cancer, colon/rectum cancer, lung cancer, prostate cancer, lymphoma, cardiovascular disease, childhood obesity, type 1 diabetes, type 2 diabetes, and autism, therapy-related cardiac dysfunction and avascular necrosis after surviving childhood cancer, the secondary malignancies after hematopoietic cell transplantation.