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Our Research and Mission

Today, quantitative ideas are an essential part of cancer research, as many of the opportunities and challenges for the cancer research community involve using complex data to further our understanding of cancer biology and optimize prevention and therapy. The mission of the Department of Biostatistics and Computational Biology (B&CB) is twofold: to generate data science knowledge and innovative tools that can enable progress in cancer research, and to provide investigators across DFCI and beyond access to highly qualified and committed quantitative scientists.

The department is home to a complex web of programs, centers, cores, labs and working groups which pursue complementary missions, but come together in forming one of the most vibrant computational sciences environment in today’s biomedicine. For example, the department is the home base of the DF/HCC Cancer Data Science program —the only one of this kind among comprehensive cancer centers, and the DF/HCC biostatistics core; it is also home to four DFCI strategic research centers, the Knowledge System software development group, and two statistical coordinating centers for clinical trial cooperative groups. Faculty members play a key role in open-source software initiatives such as Bioconductor, the CISTROME database, and cBioPortal, and in online data science education.

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