Project leadership/software development

Caterina Strambio De Castillia

Caterina Strambio De Castillia Caterina is an expert cell biologist who has devoted her career to the understanding of fundamental molecular and cellular mechanisms at the basis of nuclear transport and viral trafficking. She is an Assistant Professor in Molecular Medicine at the University of Massachusetts Medical School (UMMS), where she works with the rest of the OMEGA team and colleagues at the Biomedical Imaging Group to develop tools to make sure scientists at the bench can access the most advanced bio-image informatics data management and analysis tools regardless of their imaging and algorithm development expertise.

Caterina provides key scientific vision, strategic planning, software design, and project coordination to the OMEGA team and she is in charge of the development of metadata standards and guidelines.

Caterina’s bio

Alex Rigano

Alessandro RiganoAlex is a senior software engineer with a strong foundation in Java, C/C++, parallel programming, and in the production of databases and database management systems (DBMS) strong interest. As the constant improvement of microscopy technology leads to the accumulation of large quantities of multi-dimensional image data, the exploitation of such data to advance fundamental understanding and produce novel therapeutic interventions remains an insurmountable bottleneck for most experimental biologists. Alex’s passion is to help scientists overcome these limitations by building solid, adaptable, easy to use, interactive open source scientific software that extends the capacity of experimental biologists to exploit the potential of big-data science. Since 2013, Alex works with Caterina at the Program in Molecular Medicine (PMM) of the University of Massachusetts Medical School (UMMS).

He is the chief developer for the OMEGA project and he is in charge of all aspects of the OMEGA development cycle, including infrastructure design and development, and algorithm integration.

Alex’s bio

Project co-founders

Mario Valle

Mario ValleMario is a senior software engineer working at the Swiss National Supercomputing Center of ETH-Zurich (CSCS). He specializes in the use of scientific visualization to enable a deeper understanding of large numerical data-sets.
Mario is no longer actively involved with OMEGA. His leadership and enthusiasm at the onset of the project were essential for the definition and the initial development of the OMEGA vision and implementation plan. During this period, he was involved in all aspects of the project with emphasis on developing novel ways of thinking about data and computational process management that would support a better understanding of scientific data.

Jeremy Luban

Jeremy LubanJeremy holds the Freelander Chair in HIV/AIDS Research and is a Professor of Molecular Medicine, and of Biochemistry and Molecular Pharmacology at UMMS. He is widely recognized for the development of methodologies to identify host factors that regulate HIV-1 replication, pathogenesis, and immunity. Among the ongoing interests of his lab is the understanding of how HIV-1 gains access to the host cell nucleus where it integrates into chromosomal DNA. Another major interest centers around the mechanisms by which HIV-1 interacts with and is detected by the innate immune system. His group has published several high-impact research articles, which by shedding light on mechanisms of HIV-1 replication and immune system evasion, are expected to significantly contribute to the development of drugs and vaccines that target this virus, as well as other disease states. He has provided vision and key strategic funding to the OMEGA project from its onset.

Key scientific partners

Ivo Sbalzarini

Ivo SbalzariniIvo is the Chair of Scientific Computing for Systems Biology at the Technische Universität & Center for Systems Biology and directs the MOSAIC group at theMax Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics in Dresden, Germany. His and his group have 10 years of experience in developing algorithms for bio-image processing, viral trajectory analysis, pattern recognition in trajectories, and virus motion analysis. In addition to developing novel computational methods, Ivo provides consulting for their implementation and use in OMEGA. In addition, he is closely involved in developing methods for uncertainty quantification, which have been integrated into OMEGA. Such methods provide the prerequisite for data standardization and are expected to facilitating data transferability across labs. Together with the integration of existing algorithms, his work provides a mathematically proven foundation for the functionality of OMEGA.

Eric Hunter

Eric HunterEric is a Professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at the Emory Vaccine Center. His laboratory has been recognized internationally for its work in defining the molecular events involved in retroviral assembly and for elucidating the structure/function relationships for retroviral gene products at a molecular level. Since joining the Emory faculty in 2004, Dr. Hunter has continued examining the molecular basis for HIV entry and the role that HIV glycoproteins play in the transmission of this pathogen. He is involved in strategic scientific planning and his lab is a key beta testing site for the OMEGA project.