2018 Young Investigators

2018 Young Investigators Award Recipients

Congratulations to the recipients of our Young Investigators Awards. These early career individuals will be presenting their remarkable work in poster format during the Assembly meet and greet. Find a summary of each project below.

Basiru Adetomiwa, Redeemer’s University (RUN), Nigeria Adoption of Open Source Library Management System among Academic Libraries: Experience with Koha LMS at the Redeemers University Library, Nigeria. Open source has been the center of attention most especially in academic libraries world for the past several years. The current momentum of open source ILS adoption makes it almost inevitable that it will represent an increasing portion of the library automation landscape. Koha is considered as a highly sophisticated Integrated Library System (ILS) in the open source domain which offers full featured of ILS. Publications, CV, Article: Knowledge Sharing in Nigeria: An interview with Basiru Adetomiwa
 Osman Aldirdiri, University of Khartoum in Sudan / SPARC, Africa Encouraging local actions for global impact Bring attention to the role of the individual in global health changes. Emphasize the importance of local level contributions and call for its encouragement. Website  
Maliha Saleem Bakshi, Department of Mechatronics & Control Engineering, University of Engineering & Technology (UET), Lahore Open Data and Biomedical Engineering Research in Pakistan Open data, open access and open education are relatively new in Pakistan. Open systems related to biomedical engineering can change the research perspective in this area. We organized an OpenCon satellite event  in UET last year to share strategies for the implementation of open systems. Website
 Vinayak Bhandari, Ontario Institute for Cancer Research; University of Toronto, Department of Medical Biophysics The Genomic Consequences of Tumour Evolution and Hypoxia in Prostate Cancer We asked two fundamental questions about prostate cancer: how do prostate tumours evolve and what role does the tumour microenvironment play in driving aggressive prostate cancer. Asking these questions has yielded fundamental insights about how tumours develop, change over time and clues about what makes a small fraction of prostate tumours deadly.
 Joshua Burkhart, Department of Medical Informatics and Clinical Epidemiology, Oregon Health & Science University Pancancer Reactome Functional Interaction and Reaction Network Analyses Reveal Patterns Associated with TCGA Patient Survival
Authors: Joshua G. Burkhart, Francesco Raimondi, Robert B. Russell, Guanming Wu Human primary tumors host a great diversity of mutations across the genome, preventing clear distinction between pathologically relevant driver and peripheral passenger mutations and complicating the study of biochemical reaction pathways and molecular mechanisms involved in cancer.  Here, using high quality annually curated pathways annotated in Reactome, the most comprehensive open source biological pathway knowledgebase, along with the Mechsimo framework, a protein 3D structure-based approach to study contribution of amino acid changes to functions, we apply protein-protein and protein-chemical binding interface structural analysis to primary tumor samples from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) and show patient survival for some cancer types associates with functional interaction and biochemical reaction network features.   Website
Wengsi Chiu, Open Source Pharma Foundation Why We Need Open Source Pharma   The current pharmaceutical industry has failed to deliver. Productivity has been declining exponentially and the needs of billions have been left unmet. The Open Source Pharma Foundation aims to develop affordable medicine in areas of public health need, with a focus on diseases that largely affect the global poor. By leveraging computer power, crowdsourcing, open intellectual property, and generics manufacture, an alternative pharmaceutical system dedicated to breakthroughs in affordable medicine is possible.   Open Source Pharma  
 Christina Chung, Human Centered Design & Engineering, University of Washington Foodprint: Supporting Better Food-related Data Generation & Sharing To identify and plan strategies to support preventive care and manage chronic diseases, patients and their health providers often must collaborate. To improve support for patient-provider collaboration in healthy eating strategies and identification of IBS triggers, we designed and developed Foodprint, a photo-based food diary. In two deployment studies, Foodprint helped patients and providers identify opportunities to change, find potential triggers, and focus on communicating patient individual goals, contributing expertise to collaboration as well as developing actionable plans. Website
Andreiwid Sheffer Correa, Federal Institute of Sao Paulo Encouraging students to the Data Revolution This poster aims to share practical experiences on inserting in the students’ curriculum the Open Data topic from the standpoint of using data. In this way, students are encouraged to learn how to identify online datasets and transform data into understandable information. Outcomes of this approach are seen in the students final projects where they are asked to create an innovative solution to a problem they may have seen in practice throughout their course.  Website
Eric J. Daza, DrPH, MPS, Stanford Medicine (Stanford Prevention Research Center) Use Your Own Self-Tracked Data to Design Personalized Experiments Personal health data tracked over time are becoming increasingly available, particularly from wearable devices. This poster demonstrates how such observed time series can be used to design n-of-1 (i.e. single-case) randomized trials to help an individual discover how to improve their own health. Website
Jenna Hua, Stanford Prevention Research Center, Stanford School of Medicine An Industry-academia partnership in evaluating a head mounted activity monitor in seniors  The advent of wearable technology to monitor physical activity has created unprecedented opportunities to observe, quantify, and define physical activity in the real-world setting. Academia-industry partnerships can lead to practical and powerful outcomes. This poster presents the evaluation process and results of a newly developed head mounted activity monitor for seniors, as well as lessons learned through this academia-industry partnership.   LinkedIn Stanford Postdoc Fellows  
 Sajid Iqbal, University of Engineering and Technology (UET), Lahore Status of Open Education in Pakistan During Open Education Week 2017, we conducted an awareness seminar on open education at UET Lahore. In addition, on May 07, 2017, in the DAWN, I highlighted current online education. With the collaboration of Al-Khwarizmi Institute of Computer Science (KICS) and Transportation Engineering Department, the Department of Mechatronics & Control Engineering organized a workshop on “Open Education, Open Source Software, Open Data, and Open Access” in KICS Seminar Hall
on December 13, 2017. I am thankful to Engr. Ammad Hassan Khan, Engr. Maliha Bakshi, Engr. Waqar Mahmood, and Engr. Misbah-ur-Rehman for organizing ‘OpenCon 2017 UET Lahore’. This event provided us a platform to exchange the best practices in the implementation of open systems. Besides, on March 05, 2018, we celebrated Open Education Week 2018 at UET Lahore. The workshop explored the status of open education in Pakistan. Website
 Joanna Jurek, Ulster University An investigation for how a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) may impact post-translational modification of Retinoid X Receptor alpha (RXR) through SUMOylation   The main aim of the research is to understand process of post translational modification of nuclear retinoid X receptor (RXR), called SUMOylation and its impact on the functionality of the receptor under disease conditions or respond under conditions of cellular stress. The project investigates, if variant of nuclear retinoid X receptor alpha (RXR) direct consensus sequence E247G might affect post-translational modification – SUMOylation of lysine K245.  This study will apply sequence alignment and use of bioinformatics prediction software to construct a map of putative sites within RXR subject to modification through SUMOylation, acetylation or ubquitylation The evaluation will be made in terms of potential application in finding drug target in melanoma. Website
Marcin Kaszkowiak, Medical University of Łódź  MicroRNAs & AI – A Marriage Made in Heaven Cancer is the greatest challenge of modern medicine. In spite of many years of research, there is neither universal and effective therapy, nor fast and reliable diagnosing method. The study of microRNAs in combination with advanced data analysis is a promising research field to improve a current state.  LinkedIn profile 
Arikia Millikan, Journalist Biometric Data Shadows Media algorithms are altering our perceived realities with undeniable negative impacts on our health and overall wellbeing. Here I demonstrate how user agency is diminished through weaponized design to create biometric profiles about each of us that anyone can buy for the right price. Website
Alexis Mitelpunkt, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center Systems Medicine Integrated Model For n of One Regimen Testing In Rehabilitation Medicine   Systems medicine approach to integrate data from a variety of sources including  Electronic Health Records, Functional Assessments, Mobile Apps, Wearable Sensors, Structural and Functional Imaging and more. These will combine with Clinical as well as systems biology knowledge to allow a better understanding of each patient, and translate it  to fit the most effective therapeutic regimen and improve the outcome. Website
Cecilia Noecker, PhD candidate, Borenstein Lab, Department of Genome Sciences, University of Washington Model-based analysis of the ecological mechanisms of metabolic variation in microbiomes Evaluating the performance of a predictive algorithm requires comparison with a set of true known answers, which can present a challenge for many unanswered biological questions. In the area of microbiome research, an important goal is to identify specific microbial features and mechanisms responsible for differences in metabolic phenotypes between different communities. We have used constraint-based simulations of model microbiomes to define a “gold standard” answer to this question, to evaluate the accuracy and limitations of current methods for identifying microbial drivers of metabolic variation from multi-omic data, and to propose an improved analysis approach. Lab website, research and publications
Marc Santolini, CRI Paris – Network Science Institute at Northeastern University – Just One Giant Lab  The role of the individual at the biological, social and societal scales.   I will present several contributions that explore the impact of algorithms on personalized healthcare (personalized medicine and patient trajectories in hospital networks) as well as on our ability to include all relevant actors, from researchers to clinicians to innovators, in tomorrow’s grand health programs (role of AI in open science platform design).   Website
Lisa M. Vizer, UNC Chapel Hill, School of Medicine The Human-Centered Ecology of Passively Generated Mobile Technology Data I examine how changes in everyday mobile technology interaction patterns reflect change in cognition to implement digital phenotyping for Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) and other brain conditions. My long-term goal is to use passively collected behavior data to support people outside the clinic, incorporating human-centered design and individual characteristics into technology solutions. Website
Alik Widge, MD, PhD – Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School Engineering Brain Circuits to Treat Mental Illness Mental disorders are the largest public health challenge of our time. Our laboratory develops novel implantable devices and embedded algorithms to precisely deliver energy to the brain circuits that underlie those illnesses, with the goal of re-regulating them and bringing them back to health. I will present some of our early results in new technologies, animal models, and human clinical trials. Website