Jessica Cortez

Position: PhD Student, UCSF BMS Program, NSF Fellow

Email: Jessica.Cortez [at]

I grew up and completed my undergraduate studies in southern California. I graduated in 2012 with a BS in Biochemistry from CSU Channel Islands, during which I also spent a year studying abroad at Kingston University in London, UK. I became interested in immunology at a young age as a result of personal and family experiences with autoimmune disease. During college, I explored my interest further by participating in the Amgen Scholars Program in Mark Anderson's lab at UCSF. After graduation I returned to the Anderson lab as a technician for 3 years where I studied the molecular mechanism of Aire. I joined the Marson lab in 2016 to complete my graduate work and to continue investigating the genetics of autoimmunity. In my free time I enjoy traveling, going to concerts and doing yoga.


A large CRISPR-induced bystander mutation causes immune dysregulation.
Simeonov DR, Brandt AJ, Chan AY, Cortez JT, Li Z, Woo JM, Lee Y, Carvalho CMB, Indart AC, Roth TL, Zou J, May AP, Lupski JR, Anderson MS, Buaas FW, Rokhsar DS, Marson A. Commun Biol. 2019 Feb 18;2:70.