Scientists have looked at cells under microscopes for almost 400 years. Over that
time and just by looking at cells with the naked eye, our society has gained deep
insights into basic biological mechanisms and human disease. However, only in the
past 30 years and influenced by both digital and genomics revolutions, have we begun to realize the power and promise of cell biology as a high-dimensional, data-intensive science. Our microscopes can capture more pictures, our computers can analyze more data and our algorithms can derive insights faster than ever before possible.
However, the field is still in very early days, and there are many
challenges: We must write reproducible software, discover biologically meaningful
and interpretable cell biology representations, and develop computational methods
to integrate cellular and molecular readouts. In this seminar, I will introduce cell
biology as a data intensive science, compare it to gene expression as as systems
biology readout of cell state, and discuss pertinent ongoing applications in the Way Lab.