For my career, I’ve been trained at the intersection of data science and life science, and am now applying my craft as an entrepreneur in precision medicine.
In recent years, the marriage of data science and life science has accelerated the pace of scientific discovery and translation. The application of machine learning, modeling and simulation, and other data science approaches in biology, pharmacology, and genomics has garnered enormous interest as it continues to produce translatable insights in the academic and clinical arena.
I got my first taste of computational and mathematical modeling of complex biological systems at the cellular level as an undergraduate bioengineer at UC San Diego. I then went on to Genentech where I gained exposure to applied modeling and simulation at the physiological level, building quantitative models and using those models to determine optimal treatment strategies in different patient populations treated with a certain drug. My therapeutic area of focus was in oncology and immunological disorders.
The budding field of pharmacogenetics, the study of how a patient’s genes influence their response to drugs, motivated me to pursue a PhD at UCSF.
UCSF was an intellectual playground for me. I was able to work with very large and rich data sets that covered a good portion of the biology spectrum, including genomic, mRNA, metabolic, pharmacokinetic, pharmacodynamic and clinical lab data. I learned and applied new data science and modeling techniques to uncover new knowledge, hoping to ultimately translate and apply these insights to the real world.
My PhD work inspired me to move back from academia to private industry. I co-founded InsightRX, a company perfectly situated at the crossroads of data science and pharmacology. At InsightRX, our work focuses on applying quantitative pharmacology and machine learning to enable precision medicine at the point of care.
While my personal scientific career and the work of InsightRX use data science to drive discovery and translation, I never forget our ultimate goal of providing better patient outcomes. I hope that the intersection of data science and life science will facilitate a similar junction between research science and patient-centered healthcare.
In my spare time, I love to hike, travel and play soccer. I am a big fan of FC Barcelona and the Golden State Warriors - Durant joining the team brought me tears of joy. For travel, one of my most treasured memories was when I went hiking in the Himalayas (a place called Gaumukh).The journey ended with a serene view of the Gangotri glacier melting and creating the source of the Ganges river, the lifeblood of India. Also etched in my mind was my trip to the Lofoten Islands in Norway, in my opinion, one of the most stunning destinations in the world (picture above captures the beauty of the islands). I also love watching documentaries, reading and listening to podcasts.