WHAT: Dr. Heinrich Roder, Biodesix’ CTO and chair of the conference’s computational systems biology program, will speak on “Bridging the gap: From hypothesis-independent tests to understanding of biological mechanisms”, to introduce the Computational Systems biology track at the 6th International Conference on Bioinformatics & Systems Biology.
WHO: Heinrich Roder is an author of more than 100 publications and talks spanning the fields of theoretical physics, computational sciences, and molecular diagnostics. A Rhodes Scholar, he earned his DPhil in Theoretical Physics from Oxford University and has held positions at the Universities of Hanover and Bayreuth and Los Alamos National Laboratory. He is a founder of Biodesix. Serving as CTO, he leads the work of the Research and Development team on sensitive, high-throughput MALDI mass-spectrometry profiling of blood-based samples and the development of molecular diagnostic tests using a machine learning platform incorporating elements of deep learning.
WHEN/WHERE: August 23rd, 10:45AM EST, DoubleTree by Hilton Philadelphia Airport, 4509 Island Ave, Philadelphia. PA. Presentation is in Independence Room B.
ABSTRACT: A hypothesis-independent approach to building clinically relevant tests allows the creation of multivariate classifiers that reflect the complexity of biological interactions without any bias from expectations about their mechanisms. However, once the classifier is created, it is of interest to understand the biological underpinnings of its performance. Biodesix has developed a new data analytic platform, the Diagnostic CortexTM, that utilizes mass spectral data collected from patient serum samples to create clinically relevant tests without a prior hypotheses or molecular understanding of the underlying biology. It was successfully used to discover and validate a test predicting outcomes for patients with metastatic melanoma treated with the immune checkpoint inhibitor, nivolumab. To broaden our biological understanding, we applied ideas similar to GSEA (Gene Set Enrichment Analysis) to mass spectral data (PSEA). This approach allowed us to find correlations between classification and sets of proteins associated with known biological functions, such as acute response, wound healing, and complement system. Through the association of mass-spectral features with functional sets of proteins, we constructed a biological score, calculated for each individual sample and serving as a measure of importance of a particular biological process. These scores, as well as their changes, were found to be associated with clinical outcomes of patients, at the same time providing some insights into related biological mechanisms.
Biodesix® is a molecular diagnostics company advancing the development of innovative blood tests in oncology to enable precision medicine. Biodesix discovers, develops and commercializes multivariate protein and genomic diagnostic blood tests, including GeneStrat™ and VeriStrat®, that deliver results within 72 hours. The company is changing the standard of care by providing physicians with diagnostic tests for better therapeutic guidance, more accurate prognosis and enhanced disease monitoring to improve patient outcomes. At the forefront of precision medicine, Biodesix is developing new blood tests to identify patients who may benefit from immunotherapies. In addition to developing novel diagnostics independently, the company partners with biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies to develop companion diagnostics for use with therapeutic agents.