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BioLINK 2008

About the Organizers


 Christian Blaschke is Chief Scientific Officer and leader of the text mining projects in Bioalma, Madrid, Spain. He obtained his PhD in the Group of Alfonso Valencia and was part of the organization of BioLINK SIG meetings starting in 2002. His academic work has been focused on text mining applied to molecular biology and biomedicine where he contributed in the areas of protein-protein interactions, DNA array analysis and automatic ontology learning. Christian Blaschke was also one of the organizers of the BioCreAtIvE (Critical Assessment of Information Extraction for Biology) challenge carried out in 2004.

 Lynette Hirschman is Chief Scientist and Director, Biomedical Informatics for the Information Technology Center at the MITRE Corporation in Bedford, MA, USA. She has been one of the organizers of the BioLINK SIG on Text Mining in Biology for ISMB starting in 2002, and an organizer of the 2004 and 2005 workshops on Text Mining in Biology for the ACL (Association for Computational Linguistics). Dr. Hirschman has also been a founder of BioCreAtIvE, (Critical Assessment of Information Extraction for Biology), the first Challenge Evaluation for text mining applied to biological applications held first in 2003-2004, and again in 2007-2008. She is currently working with the Genome Standards Consortium to improve capture of metadata for whole genome and metagenomics sequences using text mining and linguistic analysis.

 Hagit Shatkay is the head of the Machine Learning and Computational Biology Lab in the School of Computing, at Queen's University, Kingston, ON, Canada. Her research is in the area of machine learning as it applies to biomedical data mining. She has been an active member of the bio-text research community since its early days (1999), where her work focuses primarily on biomedical information retrieval, and on the integration of text into the biological data mining process. She has been on the organizing committee of the BioLINK SIG on Text Mining at ISMB since 2005, and on the steering committee for the TREC Genomics Track since 2003. Prior to joining Queen's University, she was an Informatics Research scientist with the Informatics Research group at Celera/Applied Biosystems, and before that a postdoctoral fellow at the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI). She holds a BSc and MSc in Computer Science from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, and a PhD in Computer Science from Brown University.

 Alfonso Valencia is the director of the Structural and Computational Biology Programme of the Spanish National Cancer Research Centre and Director of the Spanish Bioinformatics Institute. His group works in the development and application of Computational Biology methods for the study of problems related with the evolution of molecular interactions. In the field of text mining his group developed new approaches for the detection of protein function and interactions in biological text and a number of applications combining text mining with other genomic resources. Dr. Valencia is co-executive editor of the journal "Bioinformatics", member of EMBO, co-organizer of ECCB 05, chair of the text mining/Biological networks areas of ISMB (03-07) and founder, former VP, and member of the board of directors of ISCB,Dr. Valencia has been part of the organization of BioLINK (Text Mining in Biology) since 2001 and co-organizer of the (Critical Assessment of Information Extraction for Biology (BioCreAtIvE 2003-4 and 2006-07).

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