Stephan Emmerth

Stephan Emmerth

PhD | Director Therapeutic Innovation and BaseLaunch

Tel. +41 61 295 50 17

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Research (Img: Alex011973/shutterstock)

Research (Img: Alex011973/shutterstock)


Basel scientists improve analysis of carcinogens

Many cancer-causing organisms mutate rapidly, so software for studying large amounts of data is required for their analysis. Researchers in Basel are working on ways to drive expertise in this software.

The causes behind the rapid mutation of carcinogens can be studied by analysing the genome, explained the Basel-based Department of Biosystems (D-BSSE), which is part of the Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich (ETH), in a statement.

Empirical analyses are extensive, owing to the availability of increasing amounts of gene sequencing data. There are also increasing numbers of applications for the statistical analysis of such large amounts of data. These analyses could provide information about how diseases spread.  

However, complex statistical methods implemented in software are required to conduct these analyses. For such analyses, the D-BSSE would use a software such as BEAST 2. It now wants to improve the use of this software.

It requires high levels of skill to efficiently implement BEAST 2. To facilitate appropriate use, a team led by D-BSSE scientist Tanja Stadler has developed an online platform called “Taming the Beast”.

The platform comprises a comprehensive collection of tutorials for using the platform written by experts in the field. The material will be continuously updated, with users getting chance to interact in the process. Summer courses dedicated to BEAST 2 usage will also be held.  

The analysis of particularly dangerous disease-causing organisms will develop as the users of the software improve their expertise.

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