Kopriva Science Seminar Series, Christopher Barbour
- Tuesday, October 16, 2018 at 3:10pm
- Chemistry & Biochemistry Building, Byker Auditorium - view map
Christopher Barbour, a doctoral student in the Department of Mathematical Sciences and recipient of a 2017 Kopriva Graduate Student Fellowship, will present "Statistical Methodology for Multiple Sclerosis Research" as part of the College of Letters and Sciences's Kopriva Science Seminar Series.
Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is a neurological disease that affects the central nervous system. Due to the biological complexity of neurological disorders like MS, it is difficult to quantify the level of disease severity and progression. In addition, some of the most reliable data available for studying MS, namely proteomics data from cerebro-spinal fluid (CSF), can have multiple sources of unwanted variation, such as temporal variation over time, biological variation between patients and technical precision in quantifying the protein concentrations.
Christopher Barbour is part of a research team that has developed improved measures of disease severity and utilized proteomics from CSF to better classify MS disease status using a suite of statistical learning techniques. The researchers have explored how the amount of imprecision in the measured signals can have substantial, and at times detrimental, effects on the inferences drawn and the predictions made. In this talk, Barbour will examine these issues through examples from collaborative research at the National Institutes of Health. He will also discuss the statistical solutions used to solve these problems.
About the speaker
Christopher Barbour is the recipient of a 2017 Kopriva Graduate Student Fellowship. Barbour, who is pursuing his doctorate in MSU’s Department of Mathematical Sciences, is developing new statistical methods for constructing clinical scales that can detect smaller temporal changes in disease progression with more sensitivity than any single available scale. An improved ability to detect changes in disease severity will allow for more economical screening of therapeutic drugs in clinical trials, such as those underway for MS.
A reception will follow the lecture.
Barbour's lecture is presented by the Kopriva Science Seminar Series, which is funded through an endowment created by Phil Kopriva, a 1957 microbiology graduate from MSU. Kopriva, who died in 2002, also created an endowment to fund the Kopriva Graduate Fellowship Program, which provides support and opportunities for graduate students in the College of Letters and Science, particularly in the biomedical sciences. The series features seminars by MSU graduate students, faculty members and guest speakers. For more information about this and other Kopriva lectures, please visit www.montana.edu/lettersandscience/kopriva.html.