Genetics Division Chief, Le Bonheur Children's Hospital

Professor, University of Tennessee Health Science Center

Patient Care Emphasis

Genetic syndromes associated with obesity and abnormal body fat distribution (e.g., congenital lipomatoses and lipodystrophies)

Research interests include:

  • Mechanisms by which genes regulate body composition
  • Genomic factors that contribute to HIV and TB progression in African children


Medical School

University of Cincinnati College of Medicine

Postgraduate Education

MD, University of Cincinnati College of Medicine

PhD, University of Cincinnati College of Medicine

Board Certification

American Board of Medical Genetics and Genomics


Pediatrics, Baylor College of Medicine


Medical Genetics, Baylor College of Medicine

Professional Memberships

Member, Society for Pediatric Research

Member, National Institutes of Health study section, CADO

Committee Member, Institute of Medicine, the National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine

American Society of Human Genetics

Society for Pediatric Research

Endocrine Society

National Medical Association

Selected Research

T. Varga R. Mounier, A. Patsalos, P. Gogolák, M. Peloquin, A. Horvath, A. Pap, B. Daniel, G.
Nagy, E. Pintye, S. Póliska, S. Cuvellier, S. Ben Larbi, B.E. Sansbury, M. Spite, C.W. Brown, B.
Chazaud and L. Nagy (2016) PPAR-gamma repair macrophages controls GDF3 and skeletal muscle regeneration after acute injury. Immunity (accepted).

M. Namwanje, C.W. Brown (2016) Activins and Inhibins: Roles in Development, Physiology, and Disease. Cold Spring Harb. Perspect. Biol. 8: PMID: 27328872

S.R. Lalani, J. Zhang, C.P. Schaaf, C.W. Brown*, P. Magoulas, C.-H. Tsai, A. El-Gharbawy, K. J. Wierenga, D. Bartholomew, C.-T. Fong, T. Dieber, M.K. Kukolich, L.C. Burrage, E. Austin, K. Keller, F. Fernandez, T. Lotze, A. Wilfong, G. Purcarin, W. Zhu, W. J. Craigen, M. McGuire, D. M. Muzny, J. R. Lupski, C. M. Eng, R. A. Gibbs, A. L. Beaudet, Y. Yang, M. C. Wang and F. Xia (2014) Mutations in PURA cause profound neonatal hypotonia, seizures and encephalopathy in the 5q31.3 microdeletion syndrome. Am. J. Hum. Genet. 95: 579-583. PMC4225583 (co-first author designation).

Dutta DJ, Zameer A, Mariani JN, Zhang J, Asp L, Huynh J, Mahase S, Laitman BM, Argaw AT, Mitiku N, Urbanski M, Melendez Vasquez CV, Casaccia P, Hayot F, Bottinger EP, Brown CW, John GR (2014). Combinatorial actions of Tgf and Activin ligands  romote oligodendrocytedevelopment and CNS myelination. Development 141: 2414-28.

H3Africa consortium, Brown CW* (2014). Enabling the genomic revolution in Africa. Science 344: 1346-8. *co-author

Hanchard N, Murdock D, Magoulas P, Bainbridge M, Muzny D, Wu YQ, Wang M, McGuire A, Lupski J, Gibbs R, Brown CW (2013). Exploring the utility of whole-exome sequencing as a diagnostic tool in a child with atypical episodic muscle weakness. Clin. Genet. 83: 457-61.

Zamani N, Brown CW (2011). Emerging roles for the transforming growth factor- superfamily in regulating adiposity and energy expenditure. Endocr. Rev. 32: 387- 403.

Bournat JC, Brown CW (2010). Mitochondrial dysfunction in obesity. Curr. Opin. Endocrinol. Diabetes Obes. 17: 446-52.

Li L, Shen JJ, Bournat JC, Huang L, Chattopadhyay A, Li Z, Shaw C, Graham BH, Brown CW (2009). Activin signaling: effects

Shen JJ, Huang L, Li L, Jorgez C, Matzuk MM, Brown CW (2009). Deficiency of growth differentiation factor 3 protects against diet-induced obesity by selectively acting on white adipose. Mol. Endocrinol. 23: 113-23.

Pangas SA, Jorgez CJ, Tran M, Agno J, Li X, Brown CW, Kumar TR, Matzuk MM (2007). Intraovarian activins are required for female fertility. Mol. Endocrinol. 21: 2458-71.

Chen C, Ware SM, Sato A, Houston-Hawkins DE, Matzuk MM, Shen MM, Brown CW (2006). The Vg1-related protein GDF3 regulates Nodal expression in the pre-gastrulation mouse embryo. Development 133: 319- 29.

Brown CW, Li L, Houston-Hawkins DE, Matzuk MM (2003). Activins are critical modulators of growth and survival. Mol. Endocrinol. 17: 2404-17.

Brown CW, Houston-Hawkins DE, Woodruff TK, Matzuk MM (2000). Insertion of Inhbb into the Inhba locus rescues the Inhba-null phenotype and reveals new activin functions. Nature Genet. 25: 453-457.