Dordt Faculty Member Receives $125,000 Grant

Sioux Center, Iowa — Dr. Nathan Tintle, professor of statistics at Dordt University, has been awarded a $125,000 grant from the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI), part of the National Institutes of Health. This grant will support Jason Westra, an early-career, master’s prepared statistician and data scientist, for a year-long genomics research experience in Tintle’s lab.

Westra, a 2008 Dordt graduate, had been teaching at the high school level and participating in Dr. Tintle’s summer undergraduate genomics training programs. During the next year, Westra will receive intensive mentoring from Tintle and training through meaningful and collaborative research work on real statistical problems when learning from genetics data.

The two will work on developing methods for identifying genetic signatures of complex disease phenotypes in electronic health records/biobanks, implementing the methods in end-user ready software including functional genomics visualization and validating and applying these methods to real data on various human cardiometabolic diseases and biomarkers. Their research is providing cutting-edge tools to maximize the clinical utility of electronic health records while respecting data privacy by maximally learning from non-identifiable patient health information.

Photo: Jason Westra (L), Nathan Tintle (R) – Photo courtesy of Dordt University



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