Byron C. Jones, Ph.D.


Genetics, Genomics & Informatics
The University of Tennessee
Health Science Center

The University of Tennessee Health Science Center
321 Wittenborg Anatomy Building
Memphis, TN 38163
Phone: (901) 448-2814
Email: Byron C. Jones



  • Ph.D. Psychology, University of Arizona
  • Postdoctoral training 1975-76 - University of Arizona with Henry Yamamura
  • Postdoctoral training, 1986-89 - Alcohol Research Center, University of Colorado with V. Gene Erwin
  • Taught and conducted research at The Pennsylvania State University 1991 - 2014.

Research Interests

Genetics of adaptation to stress relative to consumption of alcohol and function of the HPA axis. My research group is interested in individual differences in response to chronic stressful events in terms of changes in alcohol consumption and hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal axis function. Through the use of genetically defined animals, we can identify candidate genes and biochemical pathways that underlie these forms of adaptation.

Toxicogenetics of pesticides and neurotoxins. The primary interest here is in the genetic basis of individual differences in susceptibility to neurological damage (related to Parkinson's disease) produced by exposure to pesticides and herbicides. Our aim here is to model the pathophysiology related to Parkinson's disease in genetically defined mice and to relate what we find in mice to understanding why some individuals are more susceptible to pesticide-induced neurodegeneration than others.

Genetics of metal regulation in the brain. Iron, copper and zinc are necessary elements for the development and function of the brain. Too much or too little of these elements have deleterious effects on brain function and thus must be tightly regulated. Our aim is to discover the genes and gene networks that underlie individual differences in the regulation of these important metals.

Representative Publications

  • Hook M, Xu F, Terenina E, Zhao W, Starlard-Davenport A, Mormede P, Jones BC, Mulligan MK, Lu L. Exploring the involvement of Tac2 in the mouse hippocampal stress response through gene networking. Gene. 2019 May 15;696:176-185. doi: 10.1016/j.gene.2019.02.013. Epub 2019 Feb 12. PubMed PMID: 30769143.
  • Zhou D, Zhao Y, Hook M, Zhao W, Starlard-Davenport A, Cook MN, Jones BC, Hamre KM, Lu L. Ethanol's Effect on Coq7 Expression in the Hippocampus of Mice. Front Genet. 2018 Dec 4;9:602. doi: 10.3389/fgene.2018.00602. eCollection 2018. PubMed PMID: 30564271; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6288283.
  • Mulligan MK, Zhao W, Dickerson M, Arends D, Prins P, Cavigelli SA, Terenina E, Mormede P, Lu L, Jones BC. Genetic Contribution to Initial and Progressive Alcohol Intake Among Recombinant Inbred Strains of Mice. Front Genet. 2018 Sep 25;9:370. doi: 10.3389/fgene.2018.00370. eCollection 2018. PubMed PMID: 30319684; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6167410.
  • Torres-Rojas C, Jones BC. Sex Differences in Neurotoxicogenetics. Front Genet. 2018 Jun 5;9:196. doi: 10.3389/fgene.2018.00196. eCollection 2018. Review. PubMed PMID: 29922331; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5996082.
  • Luo J, Xu P, Cao P, Wan H, Lv X, Xu S, Wang G, Cook MN, Jones BC, Lu L, Wang X. Integrating Genetic and Gene Co-expression Analysis Identifies Gene Networks Involved in Alcohol and Stress Responses. Front Mol Neurosci. 2018 Apr 5;11:102. doi: 10.3389/fnmol.2018.00102. eCollection 2018. PubMed PMID: 29674951; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5895640.
  • Lu Y, Zhou D, King R, Zhu S, Simpson CL, Jones BC, Zhang W, Geisert EE, Lu L. The genetic dissection of Myo7a gene expression in the retinas of BXD mice. Mol Vis. 2018 Feb 2;24:115-126. eCollection 2018. PubMed PMID: 29430167; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5802760.

View more references (pubmed link)