Thomas L Casavant Ph.D.

Thomas L Casavant Ph.D.
Professor
Biomedical, Electrical and Computer Engineering; Ophthalmology
319-384-0804
5316
SC
Lab phone: 
319-335-5953
5316
SC
Research Focus: 

My research is divided among two areas: 1. High-Performance Parallel and Distributed Computing; and 2. Gene Discovery, Mapping, and Disease Linkage. Since 1986, my work in High-Performance Parallel and Distributed Computing has involved the theory, design, and prototyping of computer systems to solve the largest and most computationally demanding problems. This work involves the design of hardware, software, and the networking/communications to interconnect them. The two patents I hold are for the design of a parallel computing systems, and languages, that allow large numbers of microprocessors to be interconnected to cooperate in the solution of large, complex, computational problems. Since late 1994, I have been involved in the application of these high-performance computing technologies to the specific problem domain of the Human Genome Project. My efforts, in collaboration of members of the College of Medicine, have involved the design of networked systems of computers to analyze large amounts of genetic sequence data taken from mixed tissue libraries of variably expressed mRNA transcripts. Further, processing of this data has required extensive computation to construct genetically anchored maps showing relative locations of all genes. Finally, we have constructed web-based tools to collect, organize, and analyze genetic marker data, pedigree and clinical data to identify linkage between gene candidates and specific diseases including hypertension, obesity, glaucoma, and autism.

Research Mode: 
Computational
Research Paradigm(s): 
Cell Cycle/replication/recombination
Cellular Signalling Pathways
Chromatin and Histone Modifications
DNA Methylation and Epigenetics
Gene-environment Interactions and Interplay
Genetic Association Studies
Genetic Engineering
Machine Learning
MiRNA and Post-transcriptional Regulation
Mutation
Network and Systems Biology
Non-coding RNA
Population Genetics
Protein Folding and Structure
Protein-protein Interactions
Sequencing and Variant Detection
Splicing
Transcription and Transcriptional Regulation
Translation and Post-translational Modifications
Applications: 
Behavior and Mental Disorders
Cancer
Cardiovascular System
Development and Dysmorphology
Endocrine System
Evolution and Phylogeny
Eye and Vision
Hearing
Immune System
Metabolism and Nutrition
Microbiome and Infectious Diseases
Orthopaedics
Public Health and Epidemiology
Respiratory System
Stem Cells
Organisms: 
Bovine
C. Elegans
Drosophila
Human
Microbial and Viral
Rodent (mouse/rat)
Yeast and Fungi
Zebrafish
College: 
College of Engineering

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