Off the Cuff with Xihong Lin

Xihong Lin

Henry Pickering Walcott Professor of Biostatistics and Chair, Xihong Lin, was recently asked, “What can biostatisticians do today that they couldn’t do 10 years ago?”

Thanks to whole-genome sequencing, Xihong describes how they have gone from looking at one spot of the human genome at a time, to looking at millions of locations – still only 10 percent of the genome – to studying 3 billion base pairs.

In the old days, biostatisticians measured one exposure at a time—for example, one type of particulate matter in air pollution or heavy metal exposures such as mercury. Now they can simultaneously measure a spectrum of exposures in the environment in a person’s blood or body tissue and through satellite data.

See more of Xihong’s thoughts here.