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Jinni Su

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Assistant Professor
Faculty, TEMPE Campus, Mailcode 1104

Jinni Su is an assistant professor in the Department of Psychology. She is a developmental psychologist with training in human development and statistical/molecular genetics. Her research focuses on how genetic and environmental influences contribute to the development of substance use and related behavioral and emotional health outcomes in diverse populations, particularly during adolescence and young adulthood. She is passionate about increasing representation of racial/ethnic minority populations in genetic research and takes a cultural genomics approach to study the interplay between genetic predispositions and sociocultural factors in predicting substance use and related outcomes among racial/ethnic minority youth. 

Su received her bachelor’s degree in Economics at Beijing Normal University, China and her master’s and doctoral degrees in Human Development and Family Studies at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. She completed a postdoctoral fellowship in the Department of Psychology at Virginia Commonwealth University.

  • Ph.D. Human Development and Family Studies, University of North Carolina at Greensboro 2015
  • M.S. Human Development and Family Studies, University of North Carolina at Greensboro 2011
  • B.A. Economics, Beijing Normal University, China 2009
Research Interests: 
  • Gene-Environment Interplay
  • Substance Use 
  • Health Disparities
  • Intergenerational Transmission of Risk and Resilience
  • Adolescence and Young Adulthood

Department of Psychology Research Lab: Genes, Environment, and Youth Development Lab 


*undergraduate coauthors

1. Patterson, R. E., Kuchenbaecker, K., Chen, C., Popejoy, A., Walters, R., Periyasamy, S., Lam, M., Iyegbe, C., Strawbridge, R., Brick, L., Carey, C., Martin, A., Meyers, J. L., Su, J., Bigdeli, T. B., Chen, J., Edwards, A. C., Kalungi, A., Koen, N., Majara, L., Schwarz, E., Smoller, J., Sullivan, P., Vassos, E., Mowry, B., Prieto, M., Cuellar-Barboza, A., Edenberg, H., Huang, H., & Duncan, L. E. (in press). Genome-wide association in ancestrally diverse populations: Ppportunities, methods, pitfalls, and recommendations. Cell.

2. Ksinan, A., Su, J., Aliev, F., Spit for Science Workgroup, & Dick, D. M. (2019). Unpacking genetic risk pathways for college student alcohol consumption: The mediating role of impulsivity. Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research.

3. Su, J., Kuo, S. I., Derlan, C., Hagiwara, N., Guy, M., & Dick, D. M. (2019). Racial discrimination and alcohol problems among African American young adults: Examining the moderating effects of parent and peer racial socialization. Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology.

4. Silventoinen, K., Su, J., Pulkkinen, L., Barr, P., Rose, R. J., Dick, D. M., & Kaprio, J. (2019). Genetics of perceived family interactions from 12 to 17 years of age: A longitudinal twin study. Behavior Genetics, 49, 366-375.

5. Meyers, J. L., Salvatore, J. E., Johnson, E., Aliev, F., McCutcheon, V., Su, J., …& Agrawal, A. (in press). Psychosocial moderation of polygenic risk for cannabis involvement: The role of trauma exposure and frequency of religious service attendance. Translational Psychiatry.

6. Ding, W., Lin, X., Su, J., Jiang, Y., Wu, Q., & He, T. (2019). The mutual influence between marital quality and child oppositional defiant disorder symptoms in Chinese families: Do child and parent’s gender matter? Journal of Child and Family Studies, 28, 2086-2097.

7. Chen, J.,* Su, J., Adkins, A. E., Mountcastle, S. B., & Dick, D. M. (in press). Interpersonal  traumatic events and risky sexual behavior among college students: Moderation effects of physical activity and organized sports. College Student Journal.

8. #Cho, S. B., #Su, J., Kuo, S. I., Bucholz, K. K., Chan, G., Edenberg, H. J., … & Dick, D.M. (2019). Positive and negative reinforcement are differentially associated with alcohol consumption as a function of alcohol dependence. Psychology of Addictive Behaviors, 33, 58-68.  #co-first authors

9. Su, J., Kuo, S. I., Myers, J. M., Guy, M. & Dick, D. M. (2018). Examining interactions between genetic risk for alcohol problems, peer deviance, and interpersonal traumatic events on trajectory of alcohol use disorder symptoms among African American college students. Development and Psychopathology, 30, 1749-1761.

10.  Su, J., Kuo, S. I., Aliev, F., Guy, M. C., Derlan, C. L., Edenberg, H. J., … & Dick, D. M. (2018). Influence of parental alcohol dependence symptoms and parenting on adolescent risky drinking and conduct problems: A family systems perspective. Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research, 42, 1783-1794.

11. Su, J., Kuo, S. I., Bucholz, K. K., Edenberg, H. J., Kramer, J. R., Schuckit, M., & Dick, D. M. (2018). Understanding mechanisms of genetic risk for adolescent internalizing and externalizing problems: The mediating role of parenting and personality. Twin Research and Human Genetics, 21, 310-321.

12. Su, J., Leerkes, E. M., & Augustine, E. M. (2018). DRD4 interacts with adverse life events in predicting maternal sensitivity via emotion regulation. Journal of Family Psychology, 32, 783-792.

13. Su, J., Supple, A. J., Leerkes, E. M., & Kuo, S. I. (2018). Latent trajectories of alcohol use from early adolescence to young adulthood: Interaction effects between 5-HTTLPR and parenting quality and gender differences. Development and Psychopathology, 31, 457-469.

14. Dick, D. M., Barr, P. B., Cho, S. B., Cooke, M. E., Kuo, S. I., Lewis, T., Neale, Z., Salvatore, J. E., Savage, J. E., Su, J. (2018). Post-GWAS in psychiatric genetics: A developmental perspective on the “other” next steps. Genes, Brain, & Behavior.

15. Su, J., Hancock, L., McGann, A., Alshagra, M.*, Ericson, R.*, Niazi, Z.*, Dick, D. M., & Adkins, A. (2018). Evaluating the effect of a campus-wide social norms marketing intervention on alcohol use perceptions, consumption, and blackouts. Journal of American College Health, 66, 219-224.

16. McCutcheon, V., Agrawal, A., Kuo, S. I., Su, J., Dick, D. M…. & Bucholz, K. (2018). Association of parental alcohol use disorders and parental separation with offspring initiation of alcohol, cigarette, and cannabis use and sexual debut in high-risk families. Addiction, 113, 336-345.

17. Su, J., Supple, A. J., & Kuo, S. I. (2018). The role of individual and contextual factors in differentiating substance use profiles among adolescents. Substance Use and Misuse, 53, 734-743.

18. Savage, J. E., Long, E. C., Kuo, S. I., Cooke, M. E., Su, J., Barr, P. B., & Salvatore, J. E. (2017). Alcohol misuse across the lifespan: Insights from developmental Studies in behavior genetics. Policy Insights from behavioral and Brain Sciences, 4, 186-193.

19. Meyers, J. L., Zhang, J., Wang, J. C., Su, J., Kuo, S. I., ... & Porjesz, B. (2017). An endophenotype approach to the genetics of alcohol dependence: A genome wide association study of fast beta EEG in families of African ancestry. Molecular Psychiatry, 22, 1767-1775.

20. Leerkes, E.M., Su, J., Calkins, S.D., Henrich, V., & Smolen, A. (2017). Variation in mothers’ Arginine Vasopressin Receptor 1a and Dopamine Receptor D4 genes predict maternal sensitivity via social cognition. Genes, Brain, & Behavior, 16, 233-240.

21. Leerkes, E.M., Su, J., Reboussin, B.A., Daniel, S.S., Payne, C.C., & Grzywacz, J.G. (2017). Establishing the measurement invariance of the Very Short Form of the Infant Behavior Questionnaire Revised for mothers who vary on race and poverty status. Journal of Personality Assessment, 99, 94-103.

22. Leerkes, E.M., Su, J., Calkins, S.D., O’Brien, M., & Supple, A.J. (2017). Maternal physiological dysregulation while parenting poses risk for infant attachment disorganization and behavior problems. Development and Psychopathology, 29, 245-257.

23. Leerkes, E.M., Su, J., Calkins, S.D., Supple, A.J., & O’Brien, M. (2016). Pathways by which mothers’ physiological arousal and regulation while caregiving predict sensitivity to infant distress. Journal of Family Psychology, 30, 769-779.

24. Su, J., & Supple, A. J. (2016). School substance use norms and racial composition moderate parental and peer influences on adolescent substance use. American Journal of Community Psychology, 57, 280-290.

25. Leerkes, E.M., Supple, A.J., Su, J., & Cavanaugh, A.M. (2015). Links between remembered childhood emotion socialization and adult adjustment: Similarities and differences between European American and African American women. Journal of Family Issues, 36, 1854-1877.

26. Su, J., & Supple, A. J. (2014). Parental, peer, school, and neighborhood influences on adolescent substance use: Direct and indirect effects and ethnic variations. Journal of Ethnicity in Substance Abuse. 13, 227-246. 

27. Helms, H. M., Supple, A. J., Su, J., Rodriguez, Y., Cavanaugh, A. M., & Hengstebeck, N. D. (2014). Economic pressure, cultural adaptation stress, and marital quality among Mexican-origin couples. Journal of Family Psychology, 28, 77-87.

28. Supple, A.J., Su, J., Plunkett, S. W., Peterson, G.W., & Bush, K.R. (2013). Factor structure of the Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 44, 748-764.

29. Supple, A. J., Graves, K., Daniel, S., Kiang, L., Su, J., & Cavanaugh, A. M. (2013). Ethnic, gender, and age differences in adolescent nonfatal suicidal behaviors. Death Studies37, 830-847.

Spring 2021
Course NumberCourse Title
PSY 399Supervised Research
BIO 495Undergraduate Research
PSY 498Pro-Seminar
PSY 499Individualized Instruction
PSY 592Research
Fall 2020
Course NumberCourse Title
PSY 341Developmental Psychology
PSY 399Supervised Research
BIO 495Undergraduate Research
PSY 499Individualized Instruction
PSY 592Research
Spring 2020
Course NumberCourse Title
PSY 341Developmental Psychology
PSY 399Supervised Research
BIO 495Undergraduate Research
PSY 499Individualized Instruction
Fall 2019
Course NumberCourse Title
PSY 399Supervised Research
BIO 495Undergraduate Research
PSY 499Individualized Instruction
PSY 591Seminar