Center News

Fong joins HVTN biostatisticians

Interdisciplinary researcher’s methods add to HIV vaccine trials, analysis

July 19, 2010
Dr. Youyi Fong

Biostatistician Dr. Youyi Fong specializes in modeling the amino sequences of proteins to learn more about protein functions.

Photo by Dean Forbes

Dr. Youyi Fong joined the Population Sciences program in the Vaccine and Infectious Disease Division earlier this month.

Fong, who completed his doctoral degree in biostatistics at the University of Washington this year, has another doctorate in molecular, cellular and development biology from Indiana University at Bloomington.

“The applied problems that motivate me most tend to have a strong component of biological sciences,” said Fong of his research interests and work for the HIV Vaccine Trials Network. “Finding a vaccine for HIV is such a grand challenge and I love challenges. Plus, the Center has a unique combination of scientific and statistical talents.”

Fong specializes in modeling the amino sequences of proteins to learn more about protein functions. He said the methodological work such problems have inspired can be quite varied and he enjoys designing new statistical analysis methods to make such research feasible.

“Youyi is a bright scientist with depth of interdisciplinary experience in biology, computer science and biostatistics,” said Dr. Peter Gilbert, a VIDD colleague. “Right away he is making major contributions in collaborative studies for evaluating immune responses to HIV vaccines, and in the design and analysis of HIV vaccine trials.”

Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center is a world leader in research to prevent, detect and treat cancer and other life-threatening diseases.