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Exploring Human Microbes through Big Data
Katie Pollard, PhD, and her team develop statistical and computational methods to study genomes. Through their analysis and comparison, they cultivate a unique perspective on human health and disease.

Discover how big data allows for deep exploration of the human microbiome—the microbes that inhabit the human body—and how that yields insight into how our bodies work.

May 27, 2020 12:00 PM in Pacific Time (US and Canada)

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Katie Pollard, PhD
Director @Gladstone Institute of Data Science and Biotechnology
Katie Pollard earned her BA at Pomona College and her master’s degree and PhD in biostatistics from UC Berkeley. At Berkeley, she developed computationally intensive statistical methods for the analysis of microarray data with applications in cancer biology. She implemented these approaches in Bioconductor, an open-source software program used with high-throughput genomic data. As a comparative genomics postdoctoral fellow at UC Santa Cruz, Pollard participated in the Chimpanzee Genome Project and used this sequence to identify the fastest-evolving regions in the human genome, known as Human Accelerated Regions. Before joining Gladstone, Pollard was an assistant professor in the Genome Center and Department of Statistics at UC Davis. She was awarded the Thomas J. Watson Fellowship in 1995 and the Sloan Research Fellowship in 2008. She is currently a Fellow of the California Academy of Sciences and a Chan Zuckerberg Biohub Investigator.
Robert Wicks
Vice President of Philanthropy @Gladstone Institutes
A former educator and entrepreneur, Wicks served for over a decade in leadership roles at Stanford University and Dartmouth College. Prior to joining Gladstone, Wicks led Dartmouth’s West Coast Advancement Office, where he assembled a team that produced several record-breaking fundraising years. He also launched the Dartmouth Founders Project, an innovative pre-IPO philanthropy program that has served as a model for similar initiatives throughout the country. He has worked closely with the venture capital, private equity, and entrepreneurial communities to develop new approaches to philanthropy and volunteer engagement.