Computational Biology Group Wiki: About
We have interest in various fields related to Computational Biology, which are detailed in the Science section of this wiki. Briefly, there are two main directions: We develop and apply methods for the integrative analysis of large-scale biological and clinical data. This includes molecular phenotypes like gene-expression data, as well as organismal phenotypes (ranging from patient data to growth arrays). We focus particularly on relating these phenotypes to genotypes such as "Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms" (SNPs) and "Copy Number Variants" (CNVs) measured by microarrays or next-generation sequencing. Our goal is to move towards predictive models in order to improve the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of disease. A complementary direction of research pertains to relatively small genetic networks, whose components are well-known. We collaborate closely with experts of the field to identify biological systems that can be modeled quantitatively. Our goal in developing such models is not only to give an approximate description of system, but also to obtain a better understanding of its properties. For example, regulatory networks evolved to function reliably under ever-changing environmental conditions. This notion of robustness can guide computational analysis and provide constraints on models that complement those from direct measurements of the system's output.
In general, our group seeks an interdisciplinary approach, bridging the traditional gaps between physics, mathematics and biology. Our lab collaborates with experimental groups within and outside our department. In particular, due to our proximity to the CHUV we have close contacts to medical research groups and assist the analysis of clinical data.