Youssef Idaghdour, Assistant Professor of Biology, Science, NYUAD

Youssef Idaghdour

Assistant Professor of Biology, Science

Affiliation: NYU Abu Dhabi



B.Sc. in Biology from Ibn Zohr in Agadir;
M.Sc., University of Leicester;
Ph.D., North Carolina State University

Fulbright Scholar, Banting Fellow

The overarching goal of Youssef Idaghdour’s group is to understand how genomes and environment interact at various levels of biological variation, moving from the architecture of the genome itself to protein function and transitioning through the complex modes of epigenetic and gene expression regulation.

Youssef Idaghdour is particularly interested in studying the role genetic and environmental factors play in shaping health-related phenotypes and how interactions between these effects trigger disease and modulate its outcome. He does most of his experimental research on mammalian systems and he focuses on metabolic traits and immune response to cancer and infection. To achieve these goals, his lab generates high-dimensional genomic datasets from single-cells, tissues and cells, and use bioinformatics and statistical genetic approaches to analyze the data.

Youssef is also interested in the area of ecological genomics and he's actively involved in developing genetic tools to facilitate population genetic analysis of endangered marine and wildlife species including Houbara bustards and falcons.

Youssef grew up in southern Morocco where he later graduated with BSc in Biology and spent several years working on endangered avian species. After completing his M.Sc. training in Molecular Genetics at the University of Leicester in the UK and Ph.D. training in Genetics at North Carolina State University under a Fulbright Scholarship, he received a Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship and became part of a large program in medical and population genomics at Sainte-Justine Research Center in Montreal prior to joining New York University Abu Dhabi.

Selected Publications

*equal contribution

  • Hussin JG, Hodgkinson A, Idaghdour Y, Grenier JC, Goulet JP, Gbeha E, Hip-Ki E, Awadalla (2015). Recombination affects accumulation of damaging and disease-associated mutations in human populations. Nature Genetics. doi: 10.1038/ng.3216
  • Momparler RL, Côté S, Momparler LF, Idaghdour Y (2014) Epigenetic therapy of acute myeloid leukemia using 5-aza-deoxycetadine (decitabine) in combination with inhibitors of histone methylation and deacetylation. Clinical Epigenetics. 6:19. doi: 10.1186/1868-7083-6-19.
  • Hodgkinson A*, Idaghdour Y*, Gbeha E, Grenier JC, Hip-Ki, Goulet JP, Bruat V, de Malliard T, Awadalla P (2014) High Resolution Genomic Analysis of Human Mitochondrial Sequence Variation. Science. 344(6182):413-5. doi: 10.1126/science.1251110.
  • Quinlan J*, Idaghdour Y*, Goulet JP, Gbeha E, de Malliard T, Bruat V, Grenier JC, Gomez S, Sanni A, Rahimy MC, Awadalla P (2014) Genomic architecture of sickle cell disease in West African children. 14;5:26. doi: 10.3389/fgene.2014.00026. Frontiers in Genetics .
  • Idaghdour Y and Awadalla P (2012) Exploiting gene expression variation to capture gene-environment interactions for disease. Frontiers in Genetics 3:228. doi: 10.3389/fgene.2012.00228.
  • Awadalla P, Boileau C, Payette Y,  Idaghdour Y, Goulet JP, Knoppers B, Hamet P, Laberge C on  behalf of the CARTaGENE Project (2012) Cohort profile of the CARTaGENE study: Quebec’s population-based biobank for public health and personalized genomics. International Journal of Epidemiology. doi: 10.1093/ije/dys160.
  • Idaghdour Y, Quinlan J, Goulet JP, Berghout J, Gbeha E, Bruat V, de Malliard T, Grenier JC, Gomez S, Gros P, Rahimy MC, Sanni A and Awadalla P (2012) Evidence for additive and interaction effects of host genotype and infection in malaria. PNAS 109(42): 16786-16793. Feature Article + Cover.
  • The 1000 Genomes Consortium* (2010, Idaghdour Y coauthor) A map of human genome variation from population scale sequencing. Nature 467: 1061-1073.
  • Idaghdour Y, Storey JD, Jadallah SJ and Gibson G (2008) A Genome-wide Gene Expression Signature of Lifestyle and Geography in Leukocytes of Moroccan Amazighs. PLoS Genetics 4(4): e1000052.