The MSL Welcomes New Faculty Member Dr. Marco Marra


The MSL Welcomes New Faculty Member Dr. Marco Marra


Please join us in welcoming renowned genome scientist and cancer researcher Dr. Marco Marra to the Michael Smith Laboratories (MSL). Dr. Marra (he/him) brings a wealth of experience to the MSL with nearly three decades of immersion in genomics, focusing on how the dysregulation of genomes and epigenomes drives human disease, particularly cancers. Holding a cross appointment with University of British Columbia’s Department of Medical Genetics and a Canada Research Chair in Genome Science, Dr. Marra’s collaboration and leadership across the UBC research landscape is well established. His relationship with the MSL is longstanding as co-founder and co-director of the graduate Genome Science and Technology Graduate Program. An investigator with Canada’s Michael Smith Genome Sciences Centre, Dr. Marra is an instrumental leader in the field of genomic research. 

Dr. Marco Marra, Credit: Paul Joseph

Utilizing bioinformatics, genomics, genetics and cell biology, at scales ranging from patient cohorts down to single cells, the Marra lab reveals key insights about cancer cell vulnerabilities, with the intention of exploiting them to improve treatment outcomes for cancer patients. The lab is particularly interested in exploring the interplay between the epigenome and the genome, aiming to discover new therapeutic options. Other impacts of Dr. Marra’s research include contributions to the Human Genome Project, leading the sequencing of the SARS coronavirus genome, and groundbreaking studies in the application of whole genome analyses to personalized cancer medicine. 

“I am absolutely delighted to be joining the world-leading research groups at the MSL. I am very much looking forward to new collaborations, new science and new ways to demonstrate the incredible potential of research to address the biggest challenges of our times and transforming health for Canadians.”  

A world leader in his field, Dr. Marra’s awards and recognition are numerous. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, a member of the Order of British Columbia and a Canadian Medical Hall of Fame awardee. Frequently named as one of the World’s Most Influential Scientific Minds by Clarivate Analytics, placing him in the top one per cent of cited scientists in his discipline globally, Dr. Marra has co-authored more than 500 scientific publications. A research leader and innovator, we are thrilled to welcome Dr. Marra into the fold. 


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