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Center for Biomedical Semantics and Data Intelligence

Center for Biomedical Semantics and Data Intelligence (BSDI) targets right on providing solutions to the challenges of heterogeneity in healthcare knowledge discovery in the big data era. The goal of BSDI is to (1) increase interoperability among knowledge, data, and applications in the biomedical domain and (2) develop semantic technologies to store, query, integrate, and analyze the massive volumes of biological data that are being generated today, as well as infer new knowledge based on what is known. Biomedical ontologies and terminologies can provide computer programs background “knowledge” to “understand” data in the domain and enable meaningful applications. Disparate ontologies first need to be represented in a canonical and formal mechanism to ensure interoperability. Heterogeneous biomedical data then need to be normalized into comparable, consistent representations with respect to this shared knowledge base. This is a prerequisite of meaningful use of the big data to reach its full capacity.

We are a group of highly passionate scientists crossed trained in computer science, mathematics, statistics, public health, biomedical engineering, biology, and biomedical informatics. We have a strong track record in connecting real-world biomedical problems with advanced informatics solutions. The relevant technologies have been applied to large federally funded projects such as SHARPc, NCI terminology services, NCBO, and BioCADDIE. Members in our team have also received multiple grants from different funding agencies.

BSDI is directed and managed by Dr. Cui Tao, FACMI. She is an elected fellow of the American College of Medical Informatics (FACMI) and a recipient of the prestigious PECASE award named by President Obama. Dr. Tao has published more than 150 peer-reviewed articles. She is currently principal investigator (PI) for three NIH funded projects (two R01s and one U01) and an AHA funded project. Her team is the winner of the American Heart Association Grand Challenge: Precision Health and Precision Medicine in 2019. Dr. Tao has been a PI or a co-I of projects supported by over $80 Million in federal or state funding. Her total extramural funding as PI exceeds $8 million.