Dr Pau Navarro

Senior Lecturer in Quantitative Genetics


Pau Navarro is a Senior Lecturer in Quantitative Genetics at The Roslin Institute. She studied Agricultural Engineering at the Universitat Politècnica de València and undertook her PhD in Genetics at The Roslin Institute (University of Edinburgh), which she followed with a postdoc in human genetics. She has been an investigator scientist within the Complex Traits group at the MRC Human Genetics Unit in Edinburgh until  March 2023. Her research spans livestock, wild population and human genetics and epigenetics.

Her current role has both teaching and research components. Her teaching responsibilities include leading the development and delivery of education activity in the area of Data Driven Animal and Plant Breeding and Genetics linked to The Roslin Institute and The Global Academy of Agriculture and Food Systems.


BSc in Agricultural Engineering (Animal Science), Universitat Politècnica de València, 1999.

PhD in Quantitative Genetics, University of Edinburgh, 2004.

Certificate of Pedagogic Competency, Universitat Politècnica de València, 2009.

Senior Fellow of the UK Higher Education Academy, 2022.

Responsibilities & affiliations


Member of the BBSRC People and Talent (PAT) Strategy Advisory Panel Researcher Subgroup (2022-2023)


Academic Senate Member (2019 to date)

Undergraduate teaching

Undergraduate Teaching and Supervision

I am not currently involved in undergraduate teaching, but our group has hosted both undergraduate and high school students for short projects. If this is something that interests you, have a look at http://www.nuffieldfoundation.org/nuffield-research-placements and get in touch!

Postgraduate teaching

MSc Teaching and Supervision

I teach within of the QGGA MSc and  have taught at the IGMM Postgraduate programme. I have also contributed to these programmes and the EPCC HPC MSc through the provision of projects and supervision of students. These often represent the student’s first contact with practical research, and a significant amount of supervision is required to ensure that these projects not only lead to the successful completion of the study programme but also set the foundation stone for a successful career in research, by inculcating good research practice.

PhD Supervision

I have been supervising PhD students, either in formal   or informal capacities for more than a decade. Currently, I am supervisor to 6 PhD students.

I have won several awards in relation to my supervisory practice:

IGC CMVM Student Supervision and Support Award, 2021.

Student Experience Award, CMVM Staff Recognition Awards, 2022. [Also nominated for the Collaborator and Outstanding Colleague awards]

Open to PhD supervision enquiries?


Current PhD students supervised

Michael Baber

Silvia Shen

Jurgis Kuliešius

Mohamed AboelEla

Past PhD students supervised

Caelinn James (examined)

Eilidh Fummey (examined)

Arianna Landini 

Linda Repetto

Panagiotis Kokkinias

Bailey Harrington

Richard Oppong

Charley Xia

Reka Nagy

Kate Schraut

Peter Joshi

Alida Kindt


Research summary

My research focuses on the dissection of the complex trait variation of the type that underlies the health, production and reproduction traits in livestock and frequent and high impact human diseases such as cardiovascular and metabolic diseases, glaucoma and mental disorders. I use phenotypic, environmental and ‘omic (including genomic) information recorded in large populations to disentangle the complex trait architecture.

My work has focused on applying and developing tools that allow us to better understand the genetic and environmental architecture underlying complex traits. This is important from a basic biology, clinical and animal breeding viewpoints. Identifying which genes and pathways (or other genomic features) are responsible for trait variation, be it normal or pathological, will enable the design of tailored breeding programmes, unveil pharmacological targets and inform on interventions needed to prevent ill health (if we know an individual has a genetic high risk of suffering a disease, we can put in place measures that counteract this risk). These have important implications both from a welfare and an economic point of view. Some advances have been done towards unveiling regions responsible for variation, and my research has contributed to this. We have also come to the realisation that more powerful analytical and computational tools are needed to further assist in this task and to apply the outcomes of the research to ‘real life’ (for example risk prediction tools in clinical practice). Again, my current research plays an important role in the advancement of the field.

Current research interests

Some examples of my current research include: -Characterisation of DNA methylation variation at population scale and its use to unravel environmental influences on complex traits (including genome by environment interactions) -Development of tools to enable DNA methylation profiling at scale in livestock species. -Use of metabolomic profiling to investigate growth and reproductive traits in sheep.

View all 111 publications on Research Explorer

We like to participate in and organise science events in the community.

We routinely visit schools and Scout and Guirlguiding groups and talk about cells and genetics mainly, and get kids excited about science :-)