Dr Jian Zeng

Senior Research Fellow

Institute for Molecular Bioscience
+61 7 334 62276


Dr Jian Zeng is a statistical geneticist and NHMRC Emerging Leadership Fellow at the Institute for Molecular Bioscience (IMB) at the University of Queensland (UQ). He received his PhD in animal breeding and genetics at Iowa State University and joined the Program in Complex Trait Genomics (PCTG) at UQ in 2016. His research focuses on the development and application of innovative statistical methods for estimating the genetic architecture and evolutionary signals in complex traits, identifying genetic variants, genes and other molecular intermediates associated with phenotype variation, and predicting trait phenotypes using genome sequence data. In 2019, he was awarded an NHMRC Investigator Emerging Leadership Grant to develop statistical methods and software tools for best predict an individual’s disease risk using genomic and omics data. He was an invited speaker at the prestigious Gordon Research Conference in 2019.

Research Interests

  • Understanding genetic architecture and evolution of complex traits
  • Prediction of polygenic scores of complex traits and diseases
  • Mapping causal variants, genes and regulatory elements using multi-omics data


  • PhD - Animal Breeding and Genetics, University of Iowa


  • Sullivan, Patrick F., Meadows, Jennifer R. S., Gazal, Steven, Phan, BaDoi N., Li, Xue, Genereux, Diane P., Dong, Michael X., Bianchi, Matteo, Andrews, Gregory, Sakthikumar, Sharadha, Nordin, Jessika, Roy, Ananya, Christmas, Matthew J., Marinescu, Voichita D., Wang, Chao, Wallerman, Ola, Xue, James, Yao, Shuyang, Sun, Quan, Szatkiewicz, Jin, Wen, Jia, Huckins, Laura M., Lawler, Alyssa, Keough, Kathleen C., Zheng, Zhili, Zeng, Jian, Wray, Naomi R., Li, Yun, Johnson, Jessica ... Zoonomia Consortium§ (2023). Leveraging base-pair mammalian constraint to understand genetic variation and human disease. Science, 380 (6643) eabn2937, 367-+. doi: 10.1126/science.abn2937

  • Li, Ang, Liu, Shouye, Bakshi, Andrew, Jiang, Longda, Chen, Wenhan, Zheng, Zhili, Sullivan, Patrick F., Visscher, Peter M., Wray, Naomi R., Yang, Jian and Zeng, Jian (2023). mBAT-combo: a more powerful test to detect gene-trait associations from GWAS data. American Journal of Human Genetics, 110 (1), 30-43. doi: 10.1016/j.ajhg.2022.12.006

  • Qi, Ting, Wu, Yang, Fang, Hailing, Zhang, Futao, Liu, Shouye, Zeng, Jian and Yang, Jian (2022). Genetic control of RNA splicing and its distinct role in complex trait variation. Nature Genetics, 54 (9), 1355-1363. doi: 10.1038/s41588-022-01154-4

View all Publications


  • Doctor Philosophy

  • Doctor Philosophy

  • Doctor Philosophy

View all Supervision


Journal Article

Conference Publication

  • Zeng, Jian, de Vlaming, Ronald, Wu, Yang, Robinson, Matthew R., Lloyd-Jones, Luke R., Yengo, Loic, Yap, Chloe X., Xue, Angli, Sidorenko, Julia, Mcrae, Allan F., Powell, Joseph E., Montgomery, Grant W., Metspalu, Andres, Esko, Tonu, Gibson, Greg, Wray, Naomi R., Visscher, Peter M. and Yang, Jian (2018). Signatures of negative selection in the genetic architecture of human complex traits. 48th Annual Meeting of the Behavior-Genetics-Association (BGA), Boston MA, United States, 20-23 June 2018. New York, NY United States: Springer New York.

Other Outputs

PhD and MPhil Supervision

Current Supervision

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

Completed Supervision