Christopher Cunniff, M.D.
Dr. Cunniff welcomes the opportunity to work with patients, families and referring physicians to diagnose and treat children and young adults with genetic and non-genetic syndromes, particularly those associated with birth defects and developmental disabilities. He likes to educate and empower patients and families with rare disorders to be effective advocates for their medical care. He recognizes that patients with these conditions often require medical treatment from multiple specialty physicians, and he strives to connect them with an effective team of providers.
Dr. Cunniff received his medical degree from the University of Alabama School of Medicine in 1984. He completed a Pediatrics residency at the University of Vermont and a fellowship in Dysmorphology and Clinical Genetics at the University of California San Diego. He has previously served as Division Chief of Genetics at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences and at the University of Arizona.
As a clinical geneticist, Dr. Cunniff has a longstanding interest in the care of children and young adults with chromosome abnormalities, genetic disorders, birth defects and developmental disabilities. He has been a Principal Investigator for grants from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to perform surveillance for muscular dystrophy, Fetal Alcohol syndrome, autism spectrum disorders and intellectual disability, and he has published extensively on these disorders.
Dr. Cunniff has assumed national leadership roles in genetics. He has served as the Chairperson of the Committee on Genetics of the American Academy of Pediatrics, as a member of the Board of Directors and as the Secretary of the American College of Medical Genetics and as President of the American Board of Medical Genetics.
During his career in education, Dr. Cunniff has been an advocate for education and training of medical students, residents and attending physicians. At the University of Arizona he served as Director of Faculty Instructional Development, where he developed programs to assist fellow faculty members to be effective teachers, preceptors and mentors. He maintains a strong interest in general and genetic specialty education, and he presents regularly on these topics.