Julia Salzman

Our goal is to use experimental and statistical tools to construct a high dimensional picture of gene regulation, including cis and trans control of the full repertoire of RNAs expressed by cells. Currently, we are focusing on the function and biogenesis of circular RNA, which we recently discovered to be a ubiquitous and uncharacterized component of eukaryotic gene expression. A second major goal is to study gene expression variation in human cancer. Here, we combine mining massive public datasets, and experimental study of primary tumors and cell lines with bioinformatic and statistical methods. We use the cancer genome as window into functional roles played by RNA, and are attempting to characterize potential biomarkers.

Research Areas: 

  • Bioinformatics
  • Genetics
  • Machine/Statistical Learning
  • Computational Biology

Lu Tian

Dr. Lu Tian received his Sc.D. in Biostatistics from Harvard University in 2002. His graduate study was supported by a Howard Hughes fellowship. Before joining the Stanford community in 2007, he was an Assistant Professor in the Department of Preventive Medicine at Northwestern University. Dr. Tian is now a Professor in the Department of Biomedical Data Science (DBDS) and, by courtesy, in the Department of Statistics. He was one of the first faculty members in DBDS, which he joined in 2015; since then, he has actively participated in the DBDS Data Studio, the long-standing Workshop in Biostatistics series, activities in Stanford’s Center for Innovative Study Design, and other educational events hosted by the Department. He was appointed in May 2020 to serve as the department’s Associate Chair for Faculty Development.

Dr. Tian is Director of the Data Management and Statistical Core in the Stanford Alzheimer Disease Research Center. He has published more than 200 peer-reviewed journal articles and is the co-editor of the book, Advanced Medical Statistics (2016). He also served on the board of the International Chinese Statistical Association, and as the Associate Editor of Statistics in Medicine, Biometrics, Chance, and Statistical Theory and Related Fields. Dr. Tian has considerable experience in statistical methodological research, planning large epidemiological studies, designing randomized clinical trials, and conducting applied data analysis. His methodological research interests include survival analysis, resampling method, precision medicine, meta-analysis, statistical learning, causal inference, and clinical trial (the list will grow longer as time goes by). He not only loves statistical methodology research, but also welcomes any interesting collaboration opportunities with clinicians and medical researchers.

Sylvia K. Plevritis

Dr. Plevritis is Professor and Chair in the Department of Biomedical Data Science, holds an appointment in the Department of Radiology in the Stanford School of Medicine and is the William M. Hume Professor in the School of Medicine. She earned her Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering (Stanford, 1992) with concentration on MRI spectroscopic imaging of tumors. She has also earned an M.S. in Health Services Research (Stanford, 1996), with concentration on the evaluation of cancer screening programs for reducing cancer mortality.  Dr. Plevritis serves as the Director of the Stanford Center for Cancer Systems Biology (CCSB) and Director of the Cancer Systems Biology Scholars (CSBS) Program.  She has served as the co-section chief of Integrative Biomedical Imaging Informatics at Stanford from 2008-2019.

Outside Stanford, she serves on the scientific advisory board of the National Cancer Institute and is a fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering and a distinguished investigator with the Academy of Radiology Research. Dr. Plevritis leads a systems biology cancer research program that bridges genomics, biocomputation, imaging and population sciences to discover basic properties of cancer progression and translate these findings toward improvements in early detection and treatment response.