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OHSU receives grant to study evolutionary computing for biomedical image analysis

PORTLAND, Ore. -- A new OGI School of Science & Engineering grant to study evolutionary computing for biomedical image analysis exemplifies the sort of new research opportunities the graduate school has capitalized on since its 2001 merger with Oregon Health & Science University.

"Whether it's computer science, environmental science or biomedical engineering, our goal is to be collaborative and work between disciplines to solve tough societal problems like people's health and well-being," said OGI Dean Ed Thompson, Ph.D.

Grants like this -- A $225,000, three-year grant from Intel to test a new biomedical image analysis technique -- are how OGI is using its traditional science and engineering expertise to branch into new, less traditional areas of study. The emphasis on interdisciplinary research, particularly in the health care arena, also will take advantage of many grantors' -- including the National Institutes of Health -- recent decision to give higher priority to interdisciplinary research.

Intel, for example, "has a strong interest in adaptive computing methods," said Melanie Mitchell, Ph.D., an OGI associate professor of computer science and engineering and principal investigator for the new grant. "Adaptive computing uses many ideas from evolution and biology to solve problems in computing."

Mitchell, an expert in genetic algorithms, and OGI assistant professor Xubo Song, Ph.D., who specializes in image processing and machine learning, will look at ways computer programs can be developed to more quickly and accurately analyze images and classify abnormalities in the prostate.

The prostate is part of the male reproductive system. Currently men of a certain age are given yearly PSA (prostate specific antigen) tests to determine whether their prostate is healthy. But because PSA levels can fluctuate, even in men with a healthy prostate, the test isn't always a good indicator. When PSA tests are inconclusive, physicians o
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Contact: Sydney Clevenger
clevenge@ohsu.edu
503-748-1546
Oregon Health & Science University
9-Mar-2004


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