About

photo cred: Amir Kahnamouee, location: Hyde park in London

I am currently a Biostatistics PhD candidate in the Department of Epidemiology, Biostatistics and Occupational Health at McGill Univeristy under the supervision of Dr. Celia Greenwood, Dr. Mathieu Blanchette and Dr. Yi Yang.

I am broadly interested in developing statistical methods for synthesizing genomic data. My current work is focused on developing a methodological approach for identifying clusters of features that are sensitive to environmental exposures. This is motivated by the fact that environmental exposures may induce subtle system-wide changes in high-dimensional genomic data such as gene expression or epigenetic measures and hence this assumption can possibly be exploited to aid analysis of high dimensional data. These methods have been applied to understand genetic signatures that are associated with bodyfat measures in children born to women who had a gestational diabetes mellitus-affected pregnancy. The method, called ECLUST, is available as an R package on CRAN. I also developped an R package called manhattanly to create interactive Q-Q, manhattan and volcano plots. You can hear about the manhattanly package by watching my Plotcon talk in New York city.

I am also working on penalized regression methods for analyzing interactions between a high dimensional dataset (e.g. genomics, brain imaging) and the environment. Specifically, methods that impose the strong heredity principle, i.e., the interaction term will only have a non-zero estimate if its corresponding main effects are estimated to be non-zero. I have written an R package for this method available on GitHub. I have also been working on a method to fit smooth-in-time parametric hazard functions using case-base sampling. The R package casebase, allows the explicit inclusion of the time variable into the model, which enables the user to fit a wide class of parametric hazard functions. It can also be used to fit competing risk models, and create population time plots.

Prior to my current training, I completed a BSc in Actuarial Science at Concordia University and worked in pension plan administration and valuations for 4 years at a consulting firm in Montreal. During this time I became an Associate of the Society of Actuaries. I then went on to complete an MSc in Biostatistics from Queen's University under the supervision of Dr. Paul Peng and Dr. Devon Lin.


Je fais actuellement mes études de doctorat en biostatistique à l’Université McGill et travaille sous la supervision des docteurs Celia Greenwood, Mathieu Blanchette et Yi Yang. J’ai obtenu mon diplôme de baccalauréat en actuariat à l’Université Concordia pour ensuite commencer ma carrière dans le domaine des régimes de retraite au sein d’une importante firme d’actuariat-conseil. Au cours des 4 années de pratique dans le domaine de l’actuariat, j’ai obtenu le titre d’associé de la Société des Actuaires. Par la suite, j’ai réalisé une maîtrise en biostatistique à l’Université Queen’s sous la supervision des docteurs Paul Peng et Devon Lin.