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Ivan Ovcharenko, PhD


Research Interests

My group at NCBI is interested in deciphering the “second language” of the human genome. The vast landscape of the human genome hosts elements that orchestrate the dynamics of proteins in every human cell, establishes cell identity, and safeguards the defense mechanisms. These elements, known as gene regulatory elements, are encrypted in a different genomic language known as the second language of genomes. As this second language of genomes remains largely unknown, we are working on developing novel artificial intelligence methods to understand the genomic encryption of gene regulatory elements and use it to map the location of these elements in the human genome.


Song W, Sharan R, Ovcharenko I. The first enhancer in an enhancer chain safeguards subsequent enhancer-promoter contacts from a distance. Genome Biol. 2019 Sep 12;20(1):197. doi: 10.1186/s13059-019-1808-y. PubMed PMID: 31514731; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6739990.

Li S, Kvon EZ, Visel A, Pennacchio LA, Ovcharenko I. Stable enhancers are active in development, and fragile enhancers are associated with evolutionary adaptation. Genome Biol. 2019 Jul 15;20(1):140. doi: 10.1186/s13059-019-1750-z. PubMed PMID: 31307522; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6631995.

Huang D, Petrykowska HM, Miller BF, Elnitski L, Ovcharenko I. Identification of human silencers by correlating cross-tissue epigenetic profiles and gene expression. Genome Res. 2019 Apr;29(4):657-667. doi: 10.1101/gr.247007.118. Epub 2019 Mar 18. PubMed PMID: 30886051; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6442386.

Song W, Ovcharenko I. Dichotomy in redundant enhancers points to presence of initiators of gene regulation. BMC Genomics. 2018 Dec 18;19(1):947. doi: 10.1186/s12864-018-5335-0. PubMed PMID: 30563465; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6299655.