L'Oreal Research and Innovation Chair in Digital Biology

Mission
Develop new approaches and methodologies in computational biology to extract targeted information from data produced by the latest generation of laboratory instruments. This first bioinformatics research chair at Laval University will be a center of excellence in the development of Omics technologies, which involve experiments in genomics, epigenomics, proteomics and metabolomics. This chair will make Laval University a reference in the field of bioinformatics and the processing of large volumes of biological data, and will help uncover biological mechanisms that are still unknown.
Context
The rapid growth of new bio-molecule technologies is revolutionizing medical research and our understanding of the underlying mechanisms. These technologies are a valuable resource for the advancement of research, but imposes a great challenge on researchers, as the quantities of data obtained are voluminous. Moreover, one problem of size to be solved lies in the heterogeneity of the data sources to be crossed, involving as much DNA as proteins, and all the by-products produced by the cells. New methods are therefore needed to efficiently manipulate, process and analyze these information delays. Finally, the research lacks computer tools that are accessible and easy to use for non-programmer scientists. Considerable work is needed to achieve the creation of online analysis portals meeting these criteria.
Thus, the work of this chair will focus on the development of computer programs allowing the processing and analysis of multi-Omics data. New approaches will be developed to interpret this avalanche of information between different multi-Omics approaches. The multidisciplinary teams of genomics researchers involved in this chair will develop new analytical methods and computer algorithms to visualize and interpret these large volumes of data.
Objectives
This Research Chair will address the challenge of developing strategies for the integration and interpretation of large data in multi-Omics contexts. Projects will specifically address 1) statistical problems related to the integration of data from diverse experimental sources, 2) challenges related to optimal use of mass public data through the use of data-mining strategy or semantic web, 3 ) The development of a strategy for interpreting and visualizing data from various sources to increase their usefulness and facilitate their interpretation.
Scientific benefits
This research chair will enable Université Laval to be a leading player in the transformation of digital science. It will be the first Francophone university with such a support program for the development of this discipline. In addition, it will provide a highly skilled workforce, the training of new researchers and the dissemination of knowledge in this strategic area of ​​integration and cross-fertilization of large data. In addition, it will consolidate the strategic plan set up by the University, the Faculty and the creation of the Mass Data Research Center.
Principal researcher
Arnaud Droit is an associate professor at Laval University’s Faculty of Medicine in the research center of the CHU de Québec-Université Laval. He is the director of the bioinformatics and proteomics platform of the research center of the CHU of Québec-Université Laval. It is at the crossroads between the biological and computer sciences. His research program focuses on the integration and interpretation of biological and epigenomic data. His research is funded by federal and provincial granting agencies.