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Laura M. Saba, PhD

Associate Professor, Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences

Mailing address:

University of Colorado
Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences
Mail Stop C238
12850 E. Montview Blvd. V20-2124
Aurora, CO 80045

Office Location:

Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences Building (V20)
Second Floor
Room 2124


Training and Education:

  • BS in Chemistry, Colorado School of Mines, Golden, CO
  • PhD in Biostatistics, University of Colorado Health Science Center (currently Colorado School of Public Health), Denver, CO

Professional Affiliations:

  • American Statistical Association
  • International Biometric Society
  • Research Society on Alcoholism

Research Interests:

Statistical methodology involved in systems genetics analysis including microarray analysis, next generation sequencing, genetic association studies, genetic correlations, quantitative trait loci analysis, and causal inference.

The primary focus of Dr. Saba’s research is to develop and apply state-of-the-art statistical methods to high-throughput genetic/genomic data. The goal of these methods is to identify biological pathways associated with disease and to promote the discovery of druggable targets.

Dr. Saba is the statistician for a multi-member team of researchers focused on identifying genetic determinants of complex neurological traits such as alcohol abuse/dependence, drug addiction, major depression, and anxiety. She also is a member of a statistics, informatics, and programming team which created and maintains an online database and processing tools utilized by a wide range of researchers in the US and around the world for genomic in silico experiments in mice and rats (

Representative Publications:

  • Vanderlinden LA, Saba LM, Kechris K, Hoffman PL, Tabakoff B. Gene co-expression networks provide insight into genetic determinants of alcohol consumption. PLoS One 2013 Jul 23;8(7):e68878.
    *This publication is a result of a student’s thesis work.
  • Procopio D, Saba L, Walter H, Lesch O, Skala K, Schlaff G, Vanderlinden L, Clapp P, Hoffman P, Tabakoff B. Genetic Markers of Co-Morbid Depression and Alcoholism in Women. Alcohol Clin Exp Res. 2013 Jun;37(6):896-904.
  • Snell LD, Ramchandani VA, Saba L, Herion D, Heilig M, George DT, Pridzun L, Helander A, Schwandt ML, Phillips MJ, Hoffman PL, Tabakoff B; and the WHO/ISBRA Study on State and Trait Markers of Alcohol Use and Dependence Investigators. The Biometric Measurement of Alcohol Consumption. Alcohol Clin Exp Res 2012 Feb;36(2):332-41.
  • Saba LM, Bennett B, Hoffman PL, Barcomb K, Ishii T, Kechris K, Tabakoff B. A systems genetic analysis of alcohol drinking by mice, rats and men: Influence of brain GABAergic transmission. Neuropharmacology 2011; 60:1269-1280.
  • Hoffman PL, Bennett B, Saba LM, Bhave SV, Carosone-Link PJ, Hornbaker CK, Kechris KJ, Williams RW, Tabakoff B. Using the Phenogen website for 'in silico' analysis of morphine-induced analgesia: identifying candidate genes. Addict Biol. 2010 Nov 4; 16:393-404.
  • Tabakoff B, Saba L, Printz M, Flodman P, Hodgkinson C, Goldman D, Koob G, Richardson H, Kechris K, Bell RL, Hübner N, Heinig M, Pravenec M, Mangion J, Legault L, Dongier M, Conigrave KM, Whitfield J, Saunders J, Grant B, and Hoffman PL. Genetical genomic determinants of alcohol consumption in rats and humans. BMC Biology, 2009; 7:70.

Center for Translational Pharmacokinetics and Pharmacogenomics

Systems Genetics and Bioinformatics