Big data has become a ubiquitous watchword of biomedical innovation advocating deployment of advanced data-driven artificial intelligence techniques and systems thinking to revolutionise biomedical research and practice. AI-empowered Biomedicine Laboratory led by Dr Fatemeh Vafaee develops cutting-edge innovative machine-learning and network science methodologies to leverage large-scale molecular and clinical data to find hidden structures within them, account for complex interactions among the measurements, integrate heterogeneous data and make accurate predictions in different biomedical applications. In this talk, Dr Vafaee overviews three main themes in her research program including 1) minimally-invasive biomarker discovery for personalised medicine and precision therapy, 2) single-cell sequencing data analysis and integration, and 3) computational drug repositioning and network pharmacology. Across all themes, Dr Vafaee’s research heavily relies on multidisciplinary expertise and cross-faculty collaborations to generate translatable outcomes impacting upon biomedicine of the future.
Dr Fatemeh Vafaee is a Senior Lecturer in Computational Biomedicine and Systems Biology in the School of Biotechnology and Biomolecular Sciences, UNSW-Sydney. She leads the School’s Bioinformatics Committee and serves as the School’s Bioinformatics and IT Coordinator. She has launched (2017) and leads Artificial Intelligence in Biomedicine Laboratory (Vafaee Lab) at UNSW, Faculty of Science which currently holds 15 members collaboratively working on deploying advanced AI techniques to address variety of biomedical pressing problems. Dr Vafaee has received her PhD in Artificial Intelligence from the School of Computer Science at University of Illinois at Chicago, USA. She then joined the University of Toronto, University Health Network and Ontario Cancer Institute as a Postdoctoral Research Associate on computational biology and cancer informatics and had the privilege to be mentored by world-leading scientists in computational biomedicine. She then moved to Australia and joined the University of Sydney, Charles Perkins Centre and the School of Mathematics and Statistics as a Research Fellow in computational systems biology and bioinformatics. Dr Vafaee has a strong track record of multidisciplinary research leadership and industrial engagement. Her research has been attracted over $2.86M for industrial cooperative research project and biomedical research grants. She has co-authored 34 publications (68% corresponding author) in prestigious venues—e.g., Nature Methods, Nature Communications, Briefing in Bioinformatics, Systems Biology & Applications, Molecular Neurobiology, and Precision Oncology—demonstrating her research impact, leadership and substantive contribution in methodological changes.