Ph.D. Candidate Wen Wang Wins Grand Prize at MSI’s 2017 Research Exhibition

Wen Wang_2017
May 8, 2017

Ph.D. Candidate Wen Wang received the grand prize at the Minnesota Supercomputing Institute’s eighth annual Research Exhibition for her poster “Pathway-Based Discovery of Genetic Interactions in Breast Cancer.”

Wang presented on her research team’s unique computational methodology that searches for genetic variants often associated with disease—specifically, an application of this methodology that shows how combinations of genetic variants are tied to a person’s chances of getting breast cancer. The poster described the groundbreaking results of the award-winning research they submitted to the National Cancer Institute’s Up for A Challenge (U4C) Breast Cancer Challenge.

Wang’s research in particular focuses on the development and application of statistical and computational methods to solve complex biological problems, such as using system biology approaches to gain insights about how variations in genes contribute to disease susceptibility, or applying machine learning approaches to predict how a patient responds to particular drugs so that a personalized treatment can be designed. Additionally, she intends to continue using the successful computational method her research team applied to breast cancer to explore thousands of other genetic datasets for many other human diseases.

Posters presented at the exhibition competed in one of two categories: Biological and Medical Science and Physical Sciences and Engineering.  Wang won the $2,000 top prize in her category as determined by a panel of judges who interviewed each of the candidates during the event.  In addition to the poster session, the exhibition included a panel discussion about careers in HPC-related fields, plus presentations by industry representatives about current and emerging technologies.

Please join CS&E in congratulating Wen Wang on receiving this award.

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