Ian Watson
Completed PhD 2010
I received my PhD from the Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiology (LMP) in 2010. I am currently a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Laboratory of Dr. Lynda Chin at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Texas studying melanoma genetics and mouse models of cancer. My graduate training in LMP taught me the work required and quality of science needed to progress to the next stage in academic research. I found the most useful resource in LMP was its faculty, due to the fact that many faculty members are willing to spend time with students during the course of graduate classes, seminars and committee meetings to provide the necessary research guidance required to complete a graduate degree. LMP was also the department that provided me with my first research opportunity in molecular biology. Dr. Sandy Der gave me the chance to participate in a summer research studentship when such openings were not always readily available. Dr. Michael Ohh and Dr. Meredith Irwin were my graduate supervisors who provided me with the opportunity to study in their labs and encouraged me to strive to complete my PhD and Postdoctoral studies. I have reached the current stage in my career based on these two opportunities afforded to me by the department of LMP
Current Position: 
Postdoctoral Fellow, MD Anderson Cancer Center, Texas
Research Focus: 

I am currently trying to understand the landscape of genetic alterations driving melanoma through analysis of whole exome sequencing and SNP array data from patient samples. I am applying this knowledge to develop genetically engineered mouse models recapitulating suspected driving mutations and copy number alterations in melanoma genes to create improved preclinical models to better understand this disease, test preclinical therapies, and develop novel therapeutic approaches.