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CBQB hosts second annual research symposium

UIC’s Center for Bioinformatics and Quantitative Biology (CBQB) hosted its second annual Research Day on October 24 to bring together students and researchers from across the university to celebrate and share all the hard work they are completing.

The conference brought together stakeholders from across campus to discuss bioinformatics and quantitative biology. The event had a large turnout, with more than 80 attendees, 43 poster presentations, and 16 oral presentations from PhD, master’s, and undergraduate students, along with postdoctoral students and research staff. Participants in this year’s event included students from the colleges of engineering, medicine, pharmacy, and several others.

Jie Liang, director of the CBQB and Richard and Loan Hill professor, said

“This year, we have seen many more exciting works from different labs, where we witnessed the power of bioinformatics and quantitative modeling in solving really important biological problems,” Liang said. “It is an excellent representative slice of the great works at UIC. Students really enjoyed the activities: the keynote speech, talks and posters by their peers, the informal discussions, and the excitement of the award ceremony.  I am very delighted that CBQB is able to bring all these exciting works on campus together.”

The keynote speech was given by Zhiping Weng, a professor and director of the program in Bioinformatics and Integrative Biology and Li Weibo Chair in Biomedical Research at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. She discussed her work on genomics, epigenomics, transcriptomics, and molecular recognition in her speech.

Research topics covered at this year’s symposium included fluid behavior in microchannels, molecular flexibility in tight spaces, cell-type specific aging dynamics, single-cell chromatin analyses, ovarian follicle development, and many others.

Meishan Lin, assistant director of the CBQB and clinical assistant professor, said the research presented at the second annual research day was more diverse than last year.

“Graduate students from nine different labs presented their research for the oral session,” Lin said. “It was also evident that the CBQB is becoming a communication hub for research labs in the UIC that are conducting Bioinformatics and Quantitative Biology research. Many of the oral and poster presentations were showcasing the collaborative work among those research labs.”

The symposium’s organizers awarded prizes to the top three oral and poster presentations at this year’s event. Winners from this year include:

  • Third Place Poster Presentation Award: Moein Naderi
  • Second Place Poster Presentation Award: Sarah McGuinness
  • First Place Poster Presentation Award: Mark Sanborn
  • Third Place Oral Presentation Award: Samantha Fischer
  • Second Place Oral Presentation Award: Mehrdard Zandigohar
  • First Place Oral Presentation Award: Hammad Farooq

This symposium was fully sponsored by the Department of Biomedical Engineering and the Office of Vice Chancellor of Research.