Samira Asgari, PhD
img_Samira Asgari
ASSISTANT PROFESSOR | Genetics and Genomic Sciences
Research Topics
Computational Biology, Gene Expressions, Genomics, Human Genetics and Genetic Disorders, Immunology, Infectious Disease, Personalized Medicine
Multi-Disciplinary Training Area
Genetics and Genomic Sciences [GGS], Immunology [IMM]
Human genomics of infectious diseases; Human Statistical and Population genomics; Immunogenomics
Infectious diseases are one of the leading causes of mortality and morbidity worldwide. While many old infections like tuberculosis and HIV still claim millions of lives every year globally. New and emerging infections are also becoming a growing threat due to population growth, urbanization of animal habitats, global warming, and rapid population movement. There is thus a pressing need for a better understanding of infectious disease biology and for the development of innovative diagnoses, preventive, and therapeutic measures to combat ongoing and future outbreaks. Previous studies, including my PhD work, have highlighted a key role for human genetic variation in determining the outcome of infectious diseases. My previous work also shows that many disease-associated variants, including the ones affecting infection outcome, can exert their effect by regulation of cellular processes such as gene expression. Together, these studies have established that susceptibility to infectious diseases is a heritable trait, led to the discovery of several key genes that can cause susceptibility to different pathogens, and identified many genomic loci that can modulate the infectious disease risk. However, human genomics of infectious diseases lags behind other complex traits in terms of the number of loci identified. Additionally, for most known infectious diseases risk loci the cellular function of the variants and the biological mechanisms by which they influence disease pathogenesis are not known. Finally, even though the burden of infectious diseases is highest in non-European populations, the majority of large-scale infectious disease genomics studies are done in populations of European ancestry. As shown by my postdoctoral work, ancestry differences can lead to variations in the outcome of complex traits including infectious diseases and might explain why there is little concordance between infectious disease risk loci identified in different populations. There is thus a need to expand human genomics studies of infectious diseases to understudied populations and to use new approaches to connect genetic variants to their molecular function in the disease-relevant context. To this end, my group uses a combination of statistical, functional, and population genomics methods to understand how human genetic diversity translates to phenotypic diversity in the immune system and how this phenotypic diversity affects the clinical outcome of infectious diseases.

BSc, University of Tehran

MSc, University of Tehran

PhD, École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL)

postdoc, Harvard Medical School


Nature Research Awards for Inspiring and Innovating Science



NIH T32 Training Grant in Precision and Genomic Medicine



10X Genomics single-cell genomics scientific challenge grant

10X Genomics


Advanced Postdoc.Mobility grant

Swiss National Science Foundation


ASHG Charles J. Epstein Award for Excellence in Human Genetics Research – Finalist

American Society of Human Genetics


International Primary Immunodeficiencies Congress

International Patient Organisation for Primary Immunodeficiencies


Early Postdoc.Mobility grant

Swiss National Science Foundation

Physicians and scientists on the faculty of the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai often interact with pharmaceutical, device, biotechnology companies and other outside entities to improve patient care, develop new therapies and achieve scientific breakthroughs. In order to promote an ethical and transparent environment for conducting research, providing clinical care and teaching, Mount Sinai requires that salaried faculty inform the School of their outside financial relationships.

Dr. Asgari did not report having any of the following types of financial relationships with industry and other outside entities during 2023 and/or 2024: consulting, scientific advisory board, industry-sponsored lectures, service on Board of Directors, participation on industry-sponsored committees, equity ownership valued at greater than 5% of a publicly traded company or any value in a privately held company. Please note that this information may differ from information posted on corporate sites due to timing or classification differences.

Mount Sinai's faculty policies relating to faculty collaboration with industry are posted on our website. Patients may wish to ask their physician about the activities they perform for companies.