April 10, 2019 | Written by: Dario Gil
Categorized: Healthcare | IBM Fellows
Share this post:
The recognition of IBM Fellows is part of the long history of excellence at IBM. It is the most prestigious recognition in the IBM technical community and is earned through a distinguished, sustained record of technical achievement and a strong potential for continuing contributions to the growth and stature of IBM.
Please join me in congratulating two IBM Research colleagues on this exceptional achievement – Laxmi Parida and Gustavo Stolovitzy.
Also, congratulations to the entire class of 2019 IBM Fellows, who are named here. It is an honor to have you as colleagues!
“Staying resolutely focused is the hallmark of a committed scientist, and potentially leads to innovations. But one also must be cognizant of advances from other fields, and open to new perspectives on recalcitrant problems.”
– Laxmi Parida
Laxmi is a world-renowned expert in computational genomics whose breakthrough contributions to algorithms have benefited human health and society. She was instrumental in the core engine’s design and accuracy for the Watson for Genomics offering in precision oncology. Laxmi pioneered the Genographic Project’s reconstruction of deep ancestry from the recombining genome – a breakthrough with far-reaching consequences and demonstrated success in plant and tumor genomics. In the Cacao Project, her work was instrumental to marker-assisted breeding that enabled IBM’s client to diversify the crop and expand its supply chain into additional regions to secure against fungal pest. Laxmi’s melding of AI with genomics of neurological diseases has redefined classical epidemiology in Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases for discovery of causal biomarkers. She has also made fundamental contributions to pattern discovery in bioinformatics and pioneered algebraic topology in genomics, with success in microbiomes and population admixture.
“I am a committed proponent of open science, especially in biomedicine, where speed in research may result in saving patients’ lives.”
– Gustavo Stolovitzky
Gustavo is a pioneer in the area of crowdsourcing and its application to computational biology, which helped achieve breakthroughs in network biology and cancer genomics. He created the DREAM Challenges, engaging more than 15,000 researchers to address a range of medical challenges – predicting if cancer cells will respond to a drug, predicting the speed of progression in patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS, or Lou Gehrig’s disease), predicting the survival of prostate cancer patients, and many other challenges. In 2017, Gustavo led the Digital Mammography DREAM Challenge in the IBM cloud to crowdsource the development of AI algorithms to interpret mammograms for breast cancer screening. Previously, he established the nanobiotechnology program in IBM Research, producing innovations on DNA sequencing and precision medicine at the interface between silicon technology and molecular biology.