Carole Ober, PhD

The research goals of my laboratory are to identify genetic variants that influence gene expression and epigenetic marks in tissues relevant to complex phenotypes and common diseases, in particular those related to asthma, allergy and preterm birth. To this end we are using both freshly isolated cells and tissues and cell culture models of gene-environment interactions to dissect the genetic architecture of common diseases. Our studies are conducted in founder populations, the Hutterites of South Dakota and the Amish of northern Indiana, in U.S. and European birth cohorts, and in patient populations from Chicago.

Northwestern University
Evanston, IL
PhD - Biological Anthropology

George Washington University
Washington, D.C.
BA - Anthropology

Associations between fungal and bacterial microbiota of airways and asthma endotypes.
Sharma A, Laxman B, Naureckas ET, Hogarth DK, Sperling AI, Solway J, Ober C, Gilbert JA, White SR. Associations between fungal and bacterial microbiota of airways and asthma endotypes. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2019 Jul 03.
PMID: 31279011

DNA methylation in lung cells is associated with asthma endotypes and genetic risk.
Nicodemus-Johnson J, Myers RA, Sakabe NJ, Sobreira DR, Hogarth DK, Naureckas ET, Sperling AI, Solway J, White SR, Nobrega MA, Nicolae DL, Gilad Y, Ober C. DNA methylation in lung cells is associated with asthma endotypes and genetic risk. JCI Insight. 2016 12 08; 1(20):e90151.
PMID: 27942592

Effects of an Fc?RIIA polymorphism on leukocyte gene expression and cytokine responses to anti-CD3 and anti-CD28 antibodies.
Stein MM, Hrusch CL, Sperling AI, Ober C. Effects of an Fc?RIIA polymorphism on leukocyte gene expression and cytokine responses to anti-CD3 and anti-CD28 antibodies. Genes Immun. 2019 07; 20(6):462-472.
PMID: 29977032

Immune development and environment: lessons from Amish and Hutterite children.
Ober C, Sperling AI, von Mutius E, Vercelli D. Immune development and environment: lessons from Amish and Hutterite children. Curr Opin Immunol. 2017 Oct; 48:51-60.
PMID: 28843541

Innate Immunity and Asthma Risk in Amish and Hutterite Farm Children.
Stein MM, Hrusch CL, Gozdz J, Igartua C, Pivniouk V, Murray SE, Ledford JG, Marques Dos Santos M, Anderson RL, Metwali N, Neilson JW, Maier RM, Gilbert JA, Holbreich M, Thorne PS, Martinez FD, von Mutius E, Vercelli D, Ober C, Sperling AI. Innate Immunity and Asthma Risk in Amish and Hutterite Farm Children. N Engl J Med. 2016 Aug 04; 375(5):411-421.
PMID: 27518660

Genome-Wide Methylation Study Identifies an IL-13-induced Epigenetic Signature in Asthmatic Airways.
Nicodemus-Johnson J, Naughton KA, Sudi J, Hogarth K, Naurekas ET, Nicolae DL, Sperling AI, Solway J, White SR, Ober C. Genome-Wide Methylation Study Identifies an IL-13-induced Epigenetic Signature in Asthmatic Airways. Am J Respir Crit Care Med. 2016 Feb 15; 193(4):376-85.
PMID: 26474238

Maternal asthma and microRNA regulation of soluble HLA-G in the airway.
Nicodemus-Johnson J, Laxman B, Stern RK, Sudi J, Tierney CN, Norwick L, Hogarth DK, McConville JF, Naureckas ET, Sperling AI, Solway J, Krishnan JA, Nicolae DL, White SR, Ober C. Maternal asthma and microRNA regulation of soluble HLA-G in the airway. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2013 Jun; 131(6):1496-503.
PMID: 23534973

Cutting edge: polymorphisms in the ICOS promoter region are associated with allergic sensitization and Th2 cytokine production.
Shilling RA, Pinto JM, Decker DC, Schneider DH, Bandukwala HS, Schneider JR, Camoretti-Mercado B, Ober C, Sperling AI. Cutting edge: polymorphisms in the ICOS promoter region are associated with allergic sensitization and Th2 cytokine production. J Immunol. 2005 Aug 15; 175(4):2061-5.
PMID: 16081771

Shared and distinct genetic risk factors for childhood-onset and adult-onset asthma: genome-wide and transcriptome-wide studies.
Pividori M, Schoettler N, Nicolae DL, Ober C, Im HK. Shared and distinct genetic risk factors for childhood-onset and adult-onset asthma: genome-wide and transcriptome-wide studies. Lancet Respir Med. 2019 Jun; 7(6):509-522.
PMID: 31036433

Parent-of-origin effects on quantitative phenotypes in a large Hutterite pedigree.
Mozaffari SV, DeCara JM, Shah SJ, Sidore C, Fiorillo E, Cucca F, Lang RM, Nicolae DL, Ober C. Parent-of-origin effects on quantitative phenotypes in a large Hutterite pedigree. Commun Biol. 2019; 2:28.
PMID: 30675526

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Distinguished Service Professor
University of Chicago
2018

Jonas Salk Health Leadership Award for Research
March of Dimes
2017

Top 10 Clinical Research Achievement Award
Clinical Research Forum
2017

John E. Salvaggio Memorial Lectureship
American Association of Asthma, Allergy and Clinical Immunology
2015

Reuben M. Cherniak Lecturer
Petty Aspen Lung Conference
2015

Fellow
American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)
2014

Named Blum-Riese Professor
University of Chicago
2010

Northwestern Obstetrics and Gynecology Award
Northwestern University Medical School
2005

Charles Reed Lectureship
American Association of Asthma, Allergy, and Immunology (AAAAI)
2005

J. Christian Herr Award for Excellence in Basic or Applied Research in Reproductive Immunology
American Society of Reproductive Immunology (ASRI)
1996