Bioinformatics Seminar

The Bioinformatics Seminar is co-sponsored by the Department of Mathematics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Theory of Computation group at MIT's Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL). The seminar series focuses on highlighting areas of research in the field of computational biology. This year, we are hoping to highlight three topics: (1) language models and their uses in biology and biomedicine, (2) ethical and societal issues in biomedical data (e.g. privacy, fairness), and (3) single-cell biology.

Schedule - Spring 2021

Date Guest Speaker Title Abstract
Feb. 24 Po-Ru Loh
Harvard Medical School
Uncovering hidden genetic variants and their effects on human traits PDF
Mar. 3 Trey Ideker
University of California San Diego
Predicting drug response and synergy using deep learning models of human cancer PDF
Mar. 10 Katie Pollard
University of California San Francisco
Sequence-structure-function modeling for DNA PDF
Mar. 17 Melissa Gymrek
University of California San Diego
Dissecting the role of tandem repeats in complex human phenotypes PDF
Mar. 24 Chris Sander
Harvard Medical School
Mar. 31 Sarah Teichmann
Welcome Sanger Institute
Multi-modal data integration for cell atlas-ing
Apr. 7 Alexis Komor
University of California San Diego
Enabling the functional genomics field with base editors PDF
Apr. 14 David Jones
University College London
AlphaFold2 - the end of the protein folding problem or the end of the beginning? PDF
Apr. 21 Fabian Theis
TU Munich
Latent space learning in single cell genomics PDF
Apr. 28 Vineet Bafna
University of California San Diego
Extrachromosomal and other mechanisms of oncogene amplification in cancer PDF
May 5 Evan Eichler
University of Washington
Structural variation and the assembly of more complete human genomes PDF
May 12 Cole Trapnell
University of Washington
Massively multiplexed, whole-embryo developmental genetics at single-cell resolution PDF
May 19 Serena Nik-Zainal
University of Cambridge

Past Terms

A listing of the Bioinformatics Seminar series home pages from prior terms.

Organizers and Information

The Bioinformatics Seminar is hosted by MIT Simons Professor of Mathematics and head of the Computation and Biology group at CSAIL Bonnie Berger. Professor Berger is also Faculty of Harvard-MIT Health Sciences & Technology, Associate Member of the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, Faculty of MIT CSB, and Affiliated Faculty of Harvard Medical School.

The seminar is announced weekly via email to members of the seminar's mailing list and to those on CSAIL's event calendar list. It is also posted in the BioWeek calendar.

Bonnie Berger:

Shuvom Sadhuka (TA):

To be added to the seminar's email announcement list or for any questions you have about the seminar, please mail

If you plan to enroll in the associated course, 18.418/HST.504: Topics in Computational Molecular Biology, please contact Professor Berger ( and cc TA Shuvom Sadhuka ( for more information.