Jessica A. Switzenberg, Ph.D.

Staff since October 2014
Lab Manager

Research areas

  • Non-coding variation
  • Negative regulatory element assay development


  • B.A.: Biology, The College of Saint Rose (2006)
  • Ph.D.: Genetics, Michigan State University (2013)
  • Postdoctoral: Animal Science, Michigan State University (2013-2014)


Jessica completed her PhD in Genetics at Michigan State University where she worked with transgenic Cucumis melo L. (cantaloupe melon) to develop an ethylene-threshold model for floral sex expression. Her postdoctoral research looked at PBMC-derived macrophage RNA-seq data in Holstein dairy cows infected with Mycobacteria paratuberculosis (Johne’s disease) for expression changes caused by the infection. Currently, she is working on a negative regulatory element assay system to help characterize these elements in the non-coding genome. She helps manage the wet lab for Dr. Alan Boyle, and mentors graduate students, undergraduate students, and volunteers.

Boyle lab papers

  1. Nishizaki SS, Ng N, Dong S, Porter RS, Morterud C, Williams C, Asman C, Switzenberg JA, and Boyle AP. 2019. Predicting the effects of SNPs on transcription factor binding affinity. Bioinformatics. 50: 2434. DOI: 10.1093/bioinformatics/btz612.

  2. Nishizaki SS, McDonald TL, Farnum GA, Holmes MJ, Drexel ML, Switzenberg JA, Boyle AP. 2021. The inducible lac operator-repressor system is functional in zebrafish cells. Frontiers in Genetics. 12: 994. DOI: 10.3389/fgene.2021.683394.

  3. McDonald TL, Zhou W, Castro CP, Mumm C, Switzenberg JA, Mills RE and Boyle AP. 2021. Cas9 targeted enrichment of mobile elements using nanopore sequencing. Nature Communications. 12: 3586. DOI: 10.1038/s41467-021-23918-y.