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Keoni Kauwe

Professor, Biology, University President BYU-Hawaii


Dr. Kauwe is an internationally recognized researcher specializing in Alzheimer’s disease genetics. He earned his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees at BYU Provo. He then completed his Ph.D. at Washington University in St. Louis in 2007 and a postdoctoral fellowship at the Washington University School of Medicine in 2008. He joined the faculty at BYU in 2009 and is a Professor in the Department of Biology. He served as chair of the department in 2018-2019 and dean of graduate studies in 2019-2020. Currently, he is the president of Brigham Young University–Hawaii.

Dr. Kauwe has over 120 peer-reviewed publications and his research is funded by more than $6 million dollars in extramural grants. He has made important contributions towards discovering more than a dozen new genetic risk factors for Alzheimer’s disease. His work has been recognized nationally and internationally as evidenced by his appointment as a Senior Editor for the journal Alzheimer’s & Dementia, his recent service as a panelist for the 2015 National Institutes of Health Summit on Alzheimer’s disease Research, and as the scientific lead for the international Alzheimer’s disease DREAM Challenge.

Research Interests

Dr. Kauwe's research leverages novel phenotypes and approaches to characterize the genetic architecture of Alzheimer’s disease with the ultimate goal of finding a cure.

Research in the lab also includes studies on prevention, diagnosis, and the genetic basis of rheumatic heart disease and the use of genomics to address evolutionary questions in several species of fish and reptiles.