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About Jeffrey S. Morris

I am the Dell and Dennis McCarthy Distinguished Professor, Professor and Deputy Chair in the Department of Biostatistics at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. I received my PhD from the Department of Statistics at Texas A&M University in August, 2000, under the direction of Raymond J. Carroll and Naisyin Wang. I became interested in Statistics through my undergraduate mentor, Marlin Eby, while getting my B.A. in Mathematics Education at Messiah College in Grantham, PA.
My primary research interests include the development of new statistical methods for complex, structured, high-dimensional object data including functional data, image data, and high dimensional genomics data including mass spectrometry and 2-d gel proteomics data, gene expression, copy number, and genome-level methylation data. I am particularly interested in building flexible, unified modeling frameworks for performing regression analyses for these types of data, and methods of integration that combine information across different types of data.
I also collaborate with numerous researchers at MD Anderson in various areas, with particular focus on various aspects of gastro-intestinal related cancers, in terms of early diagnosis, prevention, treatment, and discovery of biomarkers and more detailed molecular characterization of these diseases and their subtypes with the goal of developing targeted therapies individualized to the patients' tumors.
My primary modus operandi is application-driven methodological research, developing new methods motivated by important scientific problems and emerging applications and data types. This type of work can be synergistic in leading to both methodological and applied impact, as I believe the best methodological work is motivated by real world applications, and well-thought-out innovative methods can extract information from complex data sometimes missed by more simplistic approaches. After developing a method tailored to a particular setting, frequently it is possible to generalize the method for broader application, identify other applications in which it can make an impact, and then further develop the method to be more suitable to these new settings.
I find this feedback loop between applications and methodological development to be rich and fruitful, and can lead to greater impact than narrowly defined methodological work limited to a single applied setting or general methodological work not directly linked to applications. My overall goal is to do work that can make specific contributions to an applied scientific area while developing a general tool that can also make much broader impact to many other scientific areas, as well.


Present Dell and Dennis McCarthy Distinguished Professor, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center ‐ Biostatistics

Curriculum Vitae

Research Interests

Functional Data Analysis, Multi-platform Genomics, Proteomics, Bayesian Modeling, Image Analysis, Wavelets, Graphical Models, and Integrative Analysis

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Honors and Awards

  • Fellow, American Statistical Association, 2011
  • H.O. Hartley Award, Texas A&M University, 2009
  • ASA Noether Young Scholar Award, 2005
  • Thomson-ESI Hot Paper in the Field of Computer Science, July 2005
  • The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center E.N. Cobb Faculty Scholar Award, 2004
  • Best Presentation, 4th Critical Assessment of Microarray Data Analysis (CAMDA), 2003
  • ISBA Mitchell Prize for Outstanding Bayesian Application Paper, 2003
  • JASA Applications and Case Studies Edtior's Invited Paper, 2003
  • Travel Award, Biometrics Section of ASA, 2001
  • 9th Annual Invited Lectureship, University of California San Francisco, 2016
  • Dell and Dennis McCarthy Distinguished Professorchip, The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, 2016-present
  • Myrto Lefkopoulou Distinguished Lectureship, Harvard University School of Public Health, 2011
  • Fellow, Institute of Mathematical Statistics, 2017
  • Texas A&M College of Science Academy of Distinguished Former Students, 2017
  • Winner, Medical Image Computing & Computer Assisted Intervention (MICCAI) Radiomics Challenge, 2016

Contact Information

PO Box 301402
Houston, TX 77230-1402
phone: (713) 563-4284
fax: (713) 563-4243


Functional Data Analysis (35)