The EDGI project’s Principal Investigator is Professor Cynthia Bulik, Distinguished Professor of Eating Disorders & Founding Director, University of North Carolina Center of Excellence for Eating Disorders. The EDGI project in Australia is led by Professor Nicholas Martin, Ph.D, Head of the Genetic Epidemiology Laboratory, QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute.
Professor Cynthia Bulik
Professor Cynthia M. Bulik, Ph.D., FAED is Distinguished Professor of Eating Disorders and the Founding Director of the University of North Carolina Center of Excellence for Eating Disorders, and Professor at Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, Sweden.
A clinical psychologist, Prof Bulik has been conducting research and treating individuals with eating disorders since 1982.
Prof Bulik was a member of the Department of Psychology at the University of Canterbury, New Zealand, between 1991-1996, where she was involved in rejuvenating the Princess Margaret Hospital Eating Disorders Program.
Prof Bulik’s research includes treatment, laboratory, epidemiological, twin and molecular genetic studies of eating disorders and body weight regulation. She has active research collaborations in more than 20 countries worldwide.
Prof Bulik is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Eating Disorders Coalition Research Award, the Academy for Eating Disorders Leadership Award for Research, the Price Family National Eating Disorders Association Research Award, the Academy for Eating Disorders Meehan/Hartley Award for Advocacy and the National Eating Disorders Association Lifetime Achievement Award.
She has published more than 500 papers and chapters on eating disorders, and is author of seven books.
“I have dedicated my career to discovering how both genes and environment cause eating disorders. EDGI is a unique opportunity to accelerate that work to inform personalised prevention and treatment efforts. Ultimately, we want to improve lives and eliminate death in individuals with eating disorders,” said Prof Bulik.
Prof Bulik’s work life is enriched by being happily married, the mother of three adult children, a gold medalist in ice dancing, and an avid ballroom dancer. Read more at www.cynthiabulik.com.
Professor Nicholas Martin
Professor Nick Martin is Head of the Genetic Epidemiology Laboratory, QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute, Brisbane and Lead Investigator for the Australian arm of the Eating Disorders Genetics Initiative (EDGI).
The scientist and Adjunct Professor in Psychology at the University of Queensland is a leader in behaviour genetics research using longitudinal twin studies, and a pioneer in the field of multivariate genetic modelling.
His more recent research focus has shifted into the field of genome-wide association studies to discover the particular genes which predispose people to clinical depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety, eating disorders, alcoholism, melanoma and other common disorders.
Prof Martin is a Fellow of the Australian Academies of Science, Health and Medical Science, and Social Science, and has previously served as President of the Behaviour Genetics Association. He is also editor of Twin Research and Human Genetics, an associate editor of Molecular Psychiatry. He has published more than 1,200 papers and won many international accolades.
As Lead Investigator for the Australian arm of EDGI – the world’s largest ever genetic investigation of eating disorders ever performed, Prof Martin is aiming to identify the hundreds of genes that influence a person’s risk of developing anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa and binge-eating disorder, to improve treatment, and ultimately, save lives.