Dr. Somnath Datta Collaborating on NIH Challenge Grant (RC1)
Somnath Datta, PhD, Professor in the Department of Bioinformatics and Biostatistics, is serving as a co-investigator on the two-year project, "Gross morphological correlates to the minicolumnopathy of autism," which began Sept. 30; Dr. Manuel Casanova, Professor and Kolb Endowed Chair in Psychiatry, is the PI. Dr. Datta plans to perform a cluster analysis of autism diagnostic criteria and volumetric measurements. A number of clustering algorithms will be used and the results will be reconciled using various quality measures for choosing the optimal clustering algorithm for the ADI-R data following their recent work in the area of statistical cluster analysis. They plan to show that even with the optimal clustering algorithm the class boundaries in a cluster analysis of autistic patients will be indistinct. The NIH designated at least $200 million in fiscal year 2010 for Challenge Grants, a new program under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). The request for applications resulted in approximately 20,000 submitted grant proposals.