Members of the PSI Lab study machine learning, genome biology and vision. We develop statistical inference and probabilistic reasoning (graphical modeling) methods for learning about complex patterns in data. In our genome biology research, we are interested in understanding the regulatory processes that enable a limited number of genes to generate a much more massive and diverse set of genetic messages. In our vision research, we focus on developing probabilistic generative models for scene and object analysis. The group is led by Brendan J. Frey in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, with cross appointments in Computer Science, Banting and Best Department of Medical Research and Donnelly Centre for Cellular and Biomolecular Research. If you are interested in joining the group, click here.

Current Research Highlight

Splicing code reveals unexpected genetic determinants of autism, cancers and spinal muscular atrophy

- December 18, 2014

Splicing code reveals unexpected genetic determinants of autism, cancers and spinal muscular atrophy

In today's advance, online edition of Science magazine, Frey's team describes a very different computational approach to accurately identifying mutations that may cause disease. The publication authored by team members Hui Xiong, Babak Alipanahi, Leo Lee, Hannes Bretschneider and others describes a computational technique that scores how strongly genetic variants affect RNA splicing, a critical step in gene expression whose disruption contributes to many diseases, including cancers and neurological disorders. A genome-wide analysis reveals tens of thousands of variants that alter splicing and are enriched with a wide range of known diseases, and the results provide insight into the genetic basis of spinal muscular atrophy, hereditary nonpolyposis colorectal cancer and autism spectrum disorder.



Reference

Hui Y. Xiong, Babak Alipanahi, Leo J. Lee, Hannes Bretschneider, Daniele Merico, Ryan K.C. Yuen, Yimin Hua, Serge Gueroussov, Hamed S. Najafabadi, Timothy R. Hughes, Quaid Morris, Yoseph Barash, Adrian R. Krainer, Nebojsa Jojic, Stephen W. Scherer, Benjamin J. Blencowe, Brendan J. Frey*. The human splicing code reveals new insights into the genetic determinants of disease. Science DOI: 10.1126/science.1254806. Published Online December 18 2014. [ Science ]