My overall interest in computer science is in Bioinformatics which is found at the intersection of Computer Science, Biology and Mathematics.
Creighton University: Bachelors in Biology
University of Nebraska at Omaha: Masters in Mathematics
Concentration: Information theory, Operations Theory and Combinatorics
University of Nebraska at Omaha: Doctorate in Information Technology
An Avenue of Research
One of the directions of my research is in Bioinformatics, or the marriage of Biology, Mathematics, and Computer Science. In one of my research projects, I study of expression-levels of genes which are likely to be involved with the onset of diseases such as cancer. In this work, it is thought that there are some genes that initiate the disease but are further motivated by the aid of others. We count these extraneous genes to be “guilty by association” since they either contribute or invite the onset of the disease.
The data for this work must originate from patients who have been diagnosed with disease. When collecting data originating from patients for any reason, personal privacy is paramount and must be respected across the entire discipline. I have to trust that the data from these patients was collected responsibly and that the names and other concerning details where properly removed.
All the data that I apply to my statistical models has been made anonymous. This implies that the names, likenesses and other concerning details which may be used to identify a patient have been removed. While the data I use comes from the Genomic Data Commons (GDC) Data Portal, (https://portal.gdc.cancer.gov/), I have to trust that it was collected in a professional and privacy-conscientious manor.
My ethical concern in my data is motivated by my awareness that meta data about a particular patient’s time in hospital could be used to determine which patient dataset relates to what patient.
In my published work, my data contains only numerical values concerning the expressions of genes to indicate any correlations. This is done so that if a breach of patient data occurs somewhere, where-by something in the stolen data could be used to determine identity or some other distinguishing feature patients, then this meta data cannot be combined with my own data to make connections to identity. It is part of my responsibility to help protect the identities of my patients and to keep the data safe.
Otherwise, what else have I been up to? Have a look at my GitHub projects!