Current Research and Scholarly Interests
My research interests are in theoretical and mathematical biophysics, with a focus on biological optimization. Biological systems routinely and effectively solve massively complex optimization problems in evolution, learning, optimal control, cell signalling, and other areas vital to life's success. Though excellent work has been done on all of these topics, more thorough quantitative descriptions of many of these processes are still needed. There remains a great deal to explore.
In my past and current research, I draw on tools from physics, mathematics, systems engineering, computer science, and optimization theory. I am particularly excited by problems in which these fields can engage in cross-talk, especially when there has been little such interaction in the past.
My current research focuses on modeling the evolution of human diseases like antibiotic-resistant bacteria and cancer. I am especially excited by opportunities where such theoretical efforts can be readily applied to helping solve urgent medical problems.
Though my current research is focused on the areas described above, in the past I've worked on such diverse areas as clinical data analysis (with Dr. Wade Shrader of Phoenix Children's Hospital), computational drug design (with Dr. Matthew Jacobson of UCSF), quantum optical devices (with Dr. Alejandro Rodriguez of Princeton), and algorithms for optimizing spiking neural networks (with Dr. Benjamin Moseley of Carnegie Mellon and Dr. Ralf Wessel of Washington University St. Louis).