Centre for Genomic & Experimental Medicine
Centre for Genomic & Experimental Medicine

Caroline Hayward (Affiliate)

Quantitative Traits in Health and Disease

Section: Biomedical Genomics

Dr Caroline Hayward

Research in a Nutshell 

My core research interest is in the study of the genetics of quantitative traits (QTs) and their relationship to health and disease. I study the genetics of populations from Croatia and Scotland, in which a wide range of data was collected from medical examinations, questionnaires and biochemical assays.  Plasma, serum and urine have been stored from each cohort participant, allowing additional lab-based measures to be derived, and new hypotheses to be tested. Recent advances in Electronic Health Record linkage has increased the availability of clinical measures and enables the longitudinal follow-up of participants which can then be associated with genetic factors. 

I have a major interest in kidney-related traits and lead a European Consortium of Urinary Traits as well as being a participating member of the Chronic Kidney Disease Genetic consortium (CKDGen).

The diversity of phenotypes measured in these cohorts has enabled my research to cover quantitative traits relevant to a very broad spectrum of medically relevant conditions including lung function, pain, heart disease and the consequences of germline viral integration.


Research Programme


Caroline Hayward Group Leader
Shona Kerr Project Manager
Susan Campbell Technical Support
Anne Richmond Data Analyst
Christina Joseph PhD student




  • Institute of Genetics and Cancer, University of Edinburgh: Professor Malcolm Dunlop, Dr Toby Hurd, Professor Andrew Jackson, Professor David Porteous, Professor Colin Semple, Professor Martin Taylor, Dr Pippa Thomson, Professor Wendy Bickmore.
  • University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, UK: Professor Harry Campbell, Professor Ian Deary, Professor Andrew McIntosh, Professor Igor Rudan,  Professor Brian Walker, Professor Sarah Wild
  • University of Glasgow, Glasgow, UK Professor Sandosh Padmanabhan and Professor Christian Delles (Institute of Cardiovascular and Medical Sciences); Professor Ruth Jarrett (Institute of Infection, Immunity and Inflammation)
  • University of Dundee, Dundee, UK Professor Colin Palmer, Professor Blair Smith (School of Medicine).
  • University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen UK Dr Lynne Hocking (Institute of Medical Sciences)
  • University of Split, Croatia, Dr Ozren Polasek and Dr Ivana Kolcic  (Public Health Sciences)
  • University of Zagreb, Croatia Professor Gordan Lauc (Faculty of Pharmacy and Biochemistry)
  • Institute for Anthropological Research, Zagreb, Croatia, Dr Branca Janicijevic, Dr Nina Smolej-Narancic
  • University of Zurich, Switzerland, Professor Olivier Devuyst
  • University of Leicester, Leicester, UK, Professor Martin Tobin (Department of Health Sciences)
  • University of Lausanne, Switzerland, Professor Murielle Bochud (CHUV) Dr Zoltan Kutalik (Swiss Institute of Bioinformatics)

Partners and Funders

  • CROATIA Cohorts
  • Generation Scotland
  • VIKING Health Study

Scientific Themes

human genetics, quantitative traits, isolate populations, kidney function, disease mechanisms, phenotyping, linkage, 'omics,

Technology Expertise

GWAS, Quantitative genetics, Genomics, genotype analysis, electronic health record linkage