Since its inception in 2012, Dfam has demonstrated the promise of using profile hidden Markov Models (HMMs) to improve the detection sensitivity and annotation quality of Transposable Element (TEs) families in human and subsequently for four additional reference organisms. Despite these advances, the tools used to discover new families ( de-novo repeat finders ), improve families ( extend, defragment, subfamily clustering ), and classify TE families continue to depend on consensus sequence models. This discordance between methodologies is a direct impediment to Dfam’s expansion.
Daniel Olson has been named as a 2017 CBSD Summer Graduate Fellow. Each year, the University of Montana’s Center for Biomolecular and Structural Dynamics supports a small number of graduate students for a summer of research. Daniel, will enter the grad program here in the fall but has already begun research on models for repetitive biological sequences. That he was granted a fellowship for the summer prior to his first year in a grad program is a testimony to the excellent contributions he has already made to research on this campus, beginning with Art Woods and continuing in the Wheeler lab. Congratulations, Daniel!
Congratulations to Joyce Liu, a Sentinel High student who has been working with the Wheeler lab for the past couple years. She was recently awarded 2nd place in the Montana Tech Regional Science and Engineering Fair (link), for her project Investigating the Role of Pseudogenes as the Source of Conserved Non-Coding Elements in the Human Genome.
I’m proud to be a signatory on a guest column in today’s Missoulian, which highlights the terrific educational atmosphere and excellent research found on the University of Montana campus. Despite trying financial times resulting from an enrollment drop caused by multiple complex factors, this University is home to a great many tremendous educators and researchers.