Cyrus Mehta

Adjunct Professor of Biostatistics

Department of Biostatistics

Department of Biostatistics

675 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02139
Phone: 617.661.2011

Other Affiliations

President, Cytel Software Corporation


For the past 15 years Dr. Mehta has concentrated his research activities on developing permutational algorithms which can be applied to categorical data analysis, nonparametric tests, power and sample size calculations, the analysis of contingency tables and, more generally, to inference concerning the parameters of regression models for categorical data. These algorithms have made it computationally feasible to obtain accurate p-values, confidence intervals, and sample-size designs for small or unbalanced data sets and for sparse contingency tables. Thus they are a useful supplement to large-sample theory. The ideas underlying this research span three disciplines: statistics, computer science, and operations research. A second major research interest is in field of group sequential inference for clinical trials. Dr. Mehta collaborates with his colleagues in the department of biostatistics by developing software packages based on their research.

Dr. Mehta is co-founder and President of Cytel Software Corporation, Cambridge, Massachusetts ( Cytel’s mission is to pursue advanced research in the fields of computational statistics, group sequential inference, toxicological risk assessment, missing data problems and longitudinal data problems, and to convert the fruits of that research into user friendly software. So far Cytel has developed six statistical packages; StatXact, LogXact, EaSt, Egret, ToxTools and StaTable. The software has been favorably reviewed by the Royal Statistical Society and the American Statistical Association. It is installed world-wide, with sites at numerous universities, pharmaceutical corporations, medical research centers, and government agencies like the FDA and the CDC. In 1998 Cytel received an award from the Massachusetts Technology Development Council for outstanding technology development funded by the Small Business Innovation Research program.

Dr. Mehta has published over 65 papers in journals like JASA, Biometrika and Biometrics. He and his co-authors, Dr. Nitin Patel and Dr. Karim Hirji received the 1987 George W. Snedecor Award from the American Statistical Association. In 1995 Dr. Mehta was elected a Fellow of the American Statistical Association.

He has been a member of the faculty in the Department of Biostatistics, Harvard School of Public Health since 1979. Previously he taught at the University of Pittsburgh. He gives numerous short-courses and workshops at pharmaceutical companies, universities and government agencies both in the USA and overseas. Dr. Mehta is also the Zoroastrian representative on Harvard University’s Board of Ministry.


B.Tech, 1967, Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay
S.M, 1970, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Ph.D., 1973, Massachusetts Institute of Technology