Who is Paola Sebastiani?
Paola Sebastiani is a biostatistician and a Professor at Boston University working in the field of genetic epidemiology, building prognostic models that can be used for the dissection of complex traits. Her most important contribution is a model based on a Bayesian network that integrates more than 60 single-nucleotide polymorphisms and other biomarkers to compute the risk for stroke in patients with sickle cell anemia. This model was shown to have high sensitivity and specificity and demonstrated, for the first time, how an accurate risk prediction model of a complex genetic trait that is modulated by several interacting genes can be built using Bayesian networks.
Sebastiani obtained a first degree in Mathematics from the University of Perugia, Italy, an M.Sc. in Statistics from University College London, and a Ph.D. in Statistics from the Sapienza University of Rome. Her research interests include Bayesian modeling of biomedical data, particularly genetic and genomic data. She came to Boston University in 2003, after previously having been an Assistant Professor in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics at the University of Massachusetts Amherst.
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