The Wistar Institute, an international biomedical research leader in cancer, immunology and infectious diseases, announces the appointment of Noam Auslander, Ph.D., as assistant professor in the Molecular and Cellular Oncogenesis Program of The Wistar Institute Cancer Center.
Auslander’s research focuses on the development and application of advanced machine learning methods to investigate cancer progression and evolution of viral infections. Artificial intelligence (AI) uses computing power to process large and complex datasets, integrate different types of data and identify complex patterns in the data. It can uncover biologically and clinically relevant information and help predict prognosis and treatment response.
“We are absolutely thrilled to be able to welcome Noam Auslander to Wistar. Her recruitment is part of our long-range institutional commitment to expand state-of-the-art approaches in computational biology, machine learning and artificial intelligence specifically applied to critical cancer problems,” said Dario Altieri, M.D., Wistar president and CEO, director of The Wistar Institute Cancer Center and the Robert and Penny Fox Distinguished Professor. “Noam has established herself as an emerging leader in these areas, creating innovative algorithms to identify novel genomic predictors of aggressive disease, in particular metastasis, which is responsible for over 90% of all cancer deaths. Our researchers in the Cancer Center cannot be more excited about the broad and impactful collaborations that Noam’s arrival at Wistar will enable, creating new, transformative knowledge to tailor personalized cancer medicine for our patients.”
Auslander is especially interested in how cancer evolves over time. Cancer cells accumulate mutations and other alterations, leading to the emergence of different populations of cells with varying prognoses and metastatic potential. Those that carry the most favorable alterations to promote cancer are selected and cause disease progression. Deciphering this process has important implications for therapy response and resistance to treatment.
“My research is very collaborative by nature, and I’m thrilled by the opportunity to join Wistar’s world class faculty and collaborate with some of the scientists who are advancing transformative cancer research,” said Auslander. “AI has revolutionized other scientific and technologic fields and is starting to show its full potential in biomedical research. At Wistar, it can be used to identify biomarkers, develop clinical predictors, and uncover deleterious alterations. I am looking forward to establishing my laboratory and expanding my research to help answer important biologic questions.”
Auslander majored in computer science and biology at Tel Aviv University, Israel, and received her Ph.D. in computer science from the University of Maryland. She conducted her postdoctoral research work with the Evolutionary Genomics Research group at the National Center for Biotechnology Information of the National Institutes of Health.