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Fishbowl Teleseminar: Role of Synthetic Genetic Interactions in Understanding Functional Interactions Among Pathways

April 10, 2012 @ 3:30 pm - 5:15 pm

Ananth Grama
Center for Science of Information.


Synthetic genetic interactions reveal buffering mechanisms in the cell against genetic perturbations. These interactions have been widely used by researchers to predict functional similarity of gene pairs. In this talk, I present results from a comprehensive evaluation of various methods for predicting co-pathway membership of genes based on their neighborhood similarity in the genetic network. We clearly delineate the scope of these methods and use it to motivate a rigorous statistical framework for quantifying the contribution of each pathway to the functional similarity of gene pairs. We then use our model to infer interdependencies among KEGG pathways. The resulting KEGG crosstalk map yields significant insights into the high-level organization of the genetic network and is used to explain the effective scope of genetic interactions for predicting co-pathway membership of gene pairs. A direct byproduct of this effort is that we are able to identify subsets of genes in each pathway that act as `ports’ for interaction across pathways.

More generally, in the talk, I will also highlight various statistical and algorithmic approaches used in biological network analysis.


Ananth Grama is a Professor of Computer Science at Purdue University. Prior to joining Purdue as an Assistant Professor in 1996, Ananth received his PhD at the University of Minnesota.  His main areas of research include parallel and distributed computing, scientific computing, and large-scale data handling and analysis.  He has (co)authored a number of papers and two text-books on these topics. He is a recipient of the 1998 NSF CAREER award, was named 1999 Outstanding Assistant Professor of the  School of Science, the 2002 School of Science Teacher of the Year,  and was designated a University Faculty Scholar at Purdue in 2002.   Research in his group is currently supported by NSF, NIH, DARPA, DOE, and Intel.


April 10, 2012
3:30 pm - 5:15 pm