Evan’s interest in the brain and development goes back to his first college seminar course “Your Brain: A Work in Progress”. He studied biochemistry and molecular biology as an undergraduate at Allegheny College and later became involved in the genetics of neurodevelopment. His post-baccalaureate research contributed to the identification of genes associated with autism spectrum disorder in the lab of Gerard Schellenberg at the University of Pennsylvania. In the Noonan lab his research focuses on the characterization of human embryonic brain enhancers, which are regions of the genome that control when and where a gene is expressed. He utilizes a high-throughput genome editing approach to delete or ‘knock-out’ thousands of enhancer regions of the genome in parallel. The aim of his research is to identify a subset of critical enhancers that contribute to cortical development and evolution by modifying neural stem cell proliferation.