Monday, February 19, 2024
Rahul Singh portrait in front of Old Capitol on UIowa Pentacrest - MB

Singh’s NSF grant aims to develop structure-phenotype data management 

Dr. Rahul Singh joined us in Fall 2023 from San Francisco State University. He is also a professor (by affiliation) at the Center for Discovery and Innovation in Parasitic Diseases, University of California, San Diego.

Dr. Singh brings to UIowaCS a $516,000 grant from the National Science Foundation for the research project entitled Designing Structure-Phenotype Query-Retrieval and Analysis Systems for Microscopy-Based Whole Organism Studies.

An emerging challenge at the intersection of informatics and life sciences is posed by data generated from studies that involve analyzing the effect of molecular probes at a system-wide organism level. Such data is increasingly being generated in both basic and applied sciences across a wide spectrum of research activities, ranging from those that aim to understand the functional role of genes in model organisms to studies that seek to discover new drugs against diseases. Despite this, there still exists a lack of methods and systems that allow integrated storage and analysis of such structure-phenotype data.

Dr. Singh’s research has addressed this problem by designing algorithms and systems for content-based representation, storage, querying, and analysis of structure-phenotype information. Additionally, the project will continue to attract and train students to work at the interface of computer science, biology, and chemistry, with a focus on broadening participation both at the undergraduate and graduate levels and engage public audiences in high-quality learning experiences.

This project pursues an integrated research, educational, and outreach program to develop the area of structure-phenotype (SP) data management. The educational component of Dr. Singh’s proposal includes activities aimed at attraction and intensive mentoring of women and underrepresented minority students. The plan also involves curriculum development to educate students about SP data analysis and engaging public audiences in high-quality learning experiences.

Dr. Singh’s research interests lie at the intersection of computer sciences and natural sciences. In addition to his pursuits in structure-phenotype data management, Dr. Singh is also interested in designing computational methods that advance understanding of biological systems and the ability to interact with these systems at molecular-, cellular-, organism-, and population-levels.