Advanced Epigenetic Epidemiology

Course dates

11 May 2018.

Course duration

1 day (approximately 6 hours of teaching, comprising of 4 hours of lectures and 2 hours of practical sessions).
Registration will start at 8.30am, the course will finish by 5pm.

Course tutors

Dr Gemma SharpDr Matthew Suderman (course organisers), Dr Doretta Caramaschi, Dr Hannah Elliott, Dr Josine Min, Tom Richardson, Dr Esther Walton, Dr Paul Yousefi.

Course aims 

  1. To build on the knowledge and skills acquired in 'Epigenetic Epidemiology' by introducing students to more advanced approaches in epigenetic epidemiology.
  2. To provide students with the knowledge and skills necessary to design, execute and interpret more advanced epigenetic epidemiological analyses.  

Course objectives

By the end of the course students should be able to:

  • design, execute and interpret epigenome-wide association studies (EWAS) of epigenetic variance, interactions and repeated measures;
  • derive and apply epigenetic models for detecting exposure and predicting outcomes;
  • design, execute and interpret EWAS meta-analyses;
  • use appropriate databases and tools to interpret EWAS findings;
  • understand the specific challenges of missing data and imputation in EWAS;
  • estimate the contribution of epigenetic factors to trait variability and the heritability of epigenetic factors;
  • design, execute and interpret tests of mediation by epigenetic factors.

Who the course is intended for

This course is intended for individuals engaged in population-based epigenetic studies and would like an introduction to analysis approaches to answer more advanced questions. They should therefore be very familiar with the topics presented in our 'Epigenetic Epidemiology' short course. This includes, in particular, practical knowledge of using R to analyse microarray data.

Course outline 

Topics to be covered include:

  • non-standard EWAS: identifying variance differences, testing interactions, handling repeated epigenetic measurements;
  • detection and prediction: uncovering exposure histories and predicting future outcomes using epigenetic profiles;
  • meta-analysis: combining summary statistics from multiple EWAS studies to improve statistical power;
  • biological interpretation: evaluating possible biological implications of EWAS findings;
  • missing data: maximising EWAS power when covariates include missing values;
  • contribution and heritability: estimating the proportion of variation explained by genetic and epigenetic profiles;
  • mediation: evaluating the evidence that an epigenetic mark mediates a given effect.

Please note: Practical sessions of this course will be held in a computer lab, so you will not need to bring a laptop. 


Make a booking

Places available.

Course fee


More information on course fees, fee waivers and reduced prices.

Course venue

Bristol Medical School
Canynge Hall
39 Whatley Road
United Kingdom

Map and directions

Course refreshments

We provide morning and afternoon refreshment breaks, including tea and coffee, biscuits and fresh fruit.

If you have specific dietary needs we ask that you let us know in advance.

Lunch is not included. There are a range of local cafes and supermarkets nearby for students to purchase lunch. 


For further information please email

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