Annika Haywood

Postdoctoral Fellows

Research Interests

Annika has an interest in the genetics of human health and to this end is studying the Saudi population with respect to Diabetes.  Saudi Arabia has one of the highest rates of increase of diabetes in the world.  Unique genetic and physiological characteristics of the Saudi population may explain in part the dramatic rise in the prevalence of diabetes along with the change in life style. Through genome wide genetic analysis she will determine the genetic contribution and susceptibility to diabetes. She will combine measurements of multiple physiological phenotypes with genetic variation in a well-controlled population and then select the extreme ends of the spectrum  of insulin resistance or insulin sensitive for SNP genotyping and exome sequencing to identify mutations that maybe causative of insulin resistance

Selected Publications

  • Nancy D. Merner, Kathy A. Hodgkinson, Annika F.M. Haywood, Sean Connors, Vanessa M. French, Jörg-Detlef Drenckhahn, Christine Kupprion, Kalina Ramadanova,  Ludwig Thierfelder, William MacKenna, Barry Gallagher, Lynn Morris-Larkin, Anne S. Basset,  Patrick S. Parfrey, and Terry-Lynn Young  (2008) Arrhythmogenic Right Ventricular Cardiomyopathy Type 5 Is a Fully Penetrant, Lethal Arrhythmic Disorder Caused by a Missense Mutation in the TMEM43 Gene. The American Journal of Human Genetics 82 809-821.
  • Haywood, A.F.M. and Staveley B.E.  (2006) parkin negates mutant alpha-synuclein-induced degeneration in a Parkinson's disease model. Genome 49:505-510.
  • Haywood, A. F., & Staveley, B. E. (2004). parkin counteracts symptoms in a Drosophila model of Parkinson's disease. BioMed Central Neuroscience 5, 14. Highly accessed.
  • Saunders, L. D., Haywood, A. F. M., & Staveley, B. E. (2003). Overexpression of phosphatidylinositol 3-OH kinase (PI3K) in dopaminergic neurons dramatically reduces life span and climbing ability in Drosophila melanogaster.  Drosophila Information Service. 86:107-112.
  • Haywood, A. F. M., Saunders, L. D., & Staveley, B. E. (2002). dopa decarboxylase(Ddc)-GAL4 dramatically reduces life span. Drosophila Information Service 85: 42-45.


  • 2000-2006    Ph.D. - Department of Biology, Memorial University of Newfoundland, St. John’s, Canada.
    • Title of thesis: Analysis of parkin in Drosophila
  • 1998-2000    M.Sc. - Institute of Molecular Biosciences, Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand.
    • Title of Thesis: In vitro systems to study the relationship between apoptosis in multicellular organisms and yeast
  • 1991-1997    B.Sc. - majors in Genetics and Biochemistry Institute of Molecular Biosciences, Massey University 
    • (Part-time student 4 years then fulltime)