Michael Saul, Ph.D.

Research Scientist

Using tools of genetics and genomics, I study behavioral traits related to psychiatric disorders such as addiction.

How can we change behavior? The answer to this question could substantially improve our health. I believe the key to knowing how we change behavior is understanding the exquisite similarities between us and non-human animals. Using methods from genetics, genomics, computational biology, and comparative ethology, I study human-relevant behaviors in non-human animals. These similarities manifest in the molecular networks of the brain. By revealing the conserved gene networks that drive behavior, we can develop new treatments for psychiatric disorders such as addiction and autism spectrum disorder.

At JAX, I work as a research scientist in the laboratory of Prof. Elissa Chesler. Our group’s study of addiction-relevant gene networks is facilitated by high genetic diversity mouse populations. The genetic diversity of these resources results in greater behavioral diversity than is typically observed in inbred strains. With these new data and new integrative genomics tools such as the GeneWeaver suite, we can connect mouse behavioral phenomes with the genetic and genomic underpinnings of behavior in the brain.

Michael Saul on ORCID



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Education and experience

Education

 The Jackson Laboratory
Postdoctoral Associate
Adv: Prof. Elissa Chesler
2018-2019

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Postdoctoral Fellow
Advs: Profs. Lisa Stubbs, Gene Robinson, and Alison Bell
2014-2018

University of Wisconsin-Madison
Ph.D., Integrative Biology (Zoology)
Adv: Prof. Stephen Gammie
2010-2014

University of Iowa
B.S., Biological Sciences
2003-2008

Experience

The Jackson Laboratory
Research Scientist, Chesler Lab
2019-present

UCLA
Field Assistant, Lomas Barbudal Capuchin Monkey Project
2009-2010

University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics
Research Assistant, Tranel Lab
2008-2009