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On July 10, Alan Kalet successfully completed his General Exam entitled “Automated Modeling of Probabilistic Knowledge in Radiation Oncology.” Alan presented his work developing both ontologies and Bayes nets in the domain of error detection for radiation treatment planning. His broad ideas aim at reducing the cost of developing and maintaining Bayes Net systems that help medical decision making under uncertainty. His committee, Drs. John Gennari (Chair), Jason Doctor, Mark Phillips, and Archis Ghate were unanimous in agreeing that Alan has an open and potentially high-impact research problem, that he has carried out some good initial work in the area, and that he did a great job of orally presenting the problem and his approach and work to date. Congratulations, Alan!
BIME associate professor John Gennari, PhD, will be co-investigator on a four-year NSF grant titled “Synthetic Biology Open Language Resource,” along with principal investigator Herbert Sauro, PhD (UW Bioengineering) and co-investigator Chris Myers, PhD (University of Utah). This project builds directly from the BHI doctoral dissertation of Michal Galdzicki, PhD (2012) in developing SBOL, the Synthetic Biology Open Language. This NSF grant aims to (1) strengthen and extend SBOL so that it can serve a wider range of uses, (2) develop validation suites and services, so that systems can verify correct use of the standard, and (3) perform outreach and education to further grow and build a community of users and developers. Dr. Galdzicki will serve as a consultant and the HiveBio Lab (where he is chief science officer) will carry out outreach work for the grant.
BIME adjunct professor Wanda Pratt, PhD, will be the PI on a five-year, nearly $2.5 million grant from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) titled “Patients As Safeguards: Understanding The Information Needs Of Hospitalized Patients In Voicing Safety Concerns.” Collaborators and co-investigators include BHI student Logan Kendall, MHA; BIME clinical associate professor Barry Aaronson, MD; Eun Kyoung Choe, PhD; Ari Pollack, MD; Virginia Mason Medical Center; and Seattle Children’s Hospital. Through this proposal, the investigators seek to understand the information support that hospitalized patients and their caregivers need to better communicate safety concerns. The three aims for this project are to: (1) identify information that would increase patients’ and their caregivers’ situational awareness as well as enable them to recognize potential safety concerns, (2) identify opportunities to support inpatients and their caregivers in capturing and managing health information, concerns, questions, and customized care needs, (3) determine strategies to support active dialogue among patients, caregivers, and providers around safety-related concerns and the overall care experience.
The Gerontological Society of America (GSA), the nation’s oldest and largest interdisciplinary organization devoted to research, education, and practice in the field of aging has appointed BIME professor and graduate program director George Demiris, PhD, to Fellowship status through the Behavioral and Social Sciences Section of the GSA. GSA fellowship is the highest class of membership bestowed by professional colleagues and experts as an acknowledgment of outstanding and continuing work in the field of gerontology.