Morton graduated in 1973 from Maryland's Easton High School and in 1977 from the College of William and Mary with a bachelor's degree in biology. In 1982 she received her Ph.D. in human genetics from the Medical College of Virginia.
As a postdoc she worked at Children's Hospital of Boston and then for three-and-a-half years in Philip Leder's laboratory in Harvard Medical School's department of genetics. In 1987, the eminent pathologist Ramzi Cotran recruited her to become the Director of Cytogenetics at Brigham and Women's Hospital. At Harvard Medical School she is now the William Lambert Richardson Professor of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Medicine as well as a professor of pathology. At Brigham and Women's Hospital she also holds the Keneth J. Ryan, M.D., Distinguished Chair in Obstetrics and Gynecology. She is an adjunct professor at the University of Manchester.
She has done research on "molecular cytogenetics, hereditary deafness, genetics of uterine leiomyomata and human developmental disorders." The research done by her and her co-workers lead to the "identification of the first gene implicated in uterine fibroids, HMGA2."
Dr. Morton’s research focuses on using genetic information to differentiate the projected clinical course of various tumors. One of these clinical targets is the solid uterine fibroid, a benign tumor that nevertheless affects the majority of women and causes substantial morbidity. Dr. Morton’s laboratory was among the first to elucidate a collection of genetic abnormalities associated with this tumor, as chronicled in a series of papers published in the late 1990’s.
She is married and has a daughter and a son.
Awards and honors
- 1997 — Warner-Lamber/Parke-David Award of the American Society for Experimental Pathology
- 2014 — President of the American Society of Human Genetics
- 2015 — Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science
- "Cynthia Casson Morton, PhD". Morton Laboratory, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School.
- "Featured Investigator, Cynthia C. Morton, PhD". Brigham Research Institute, Brigham and Women's Hospital.
- "Prof Cynthia Morton, Chair in Auditory Genetics". The University of Manchester. (with online links to publications)
- Morton, Cynthia Casson (2011). "Time to Say Goodbye ..." The American Journal of Human Genetics. 89 (6): 687. doi:10.1016/j.ajhg.2011.11.017. ISSN 0002-9297.
- Morton, Cynthia Casson. "2014 Presidential Address: The Time of Our Lives". The American Journal of Human Genetics. 96 (3): 347–351. doi:10.1016/j.ajhg.2014.11.017.
- Morton, Cynthia C. (1998). "Many Tumors and Many Genes". The American Journal of Pathology. 153 (4): 1015–1020. doi:10.1016/S0002-9440(10)65645-3. ISSN 0002-9440. PMC 1853042.
- Cotran, R. S. (1998). "Forty Years of the Warner-Lambert/ Parke-Davis Award : A Remarkable Record". The American Journal of Pathology. 153 (4): 1014. doi:10.1016/S0002-9440(10)65644-1. PMC 1853043. PMID 9777931.
- Stern, Gavin (16 November 2015). "2015 AAAS Fellows Recognized for Contributions to Advancing Science". American Association for the Advancement of Science (aaas.org).