Future technology fighting life-threatening infections

Staphylococcus epidermidis is an ubiquitous colonizer of healthy human skin, but it is also a notorious source of serious nosocomial infections with indwelling devices and surgical procedures such as hip replacements. It has not been known whether all members of the S. epidermidis population colonizing the skin asymptomatically are capable of causing such infections, or if some of them have a heightened tendency to do so when they enter either the bloodstream or a deep tissue.

Prof Jukka Corander from OCBE UiO, and part of BigInsight's focus on infectious diseases, joined a team of microbiologists and geneticists to unravel this mystery. By combining large-scale population genomics and in vitro measurements of immunologically relevant features of these bacteria, they were able to use machine learning to successfully predict the risk of developing a serious, and possibly life-threatening infection from the genomic features of a bacterial isolate.

This opens the door for future technology where high-risk genotypes are identified proactively when a person is to undergo a surgical procedure, which has high potential to reduce the burden of nosocomial infections caused by S. epidermidis.

Read more: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-018-07368-7

Prof. Jukka Corander

Prof. Jukka Corander

BigInsight Career Day

The first BigInsight career day took place on Wednesday the 7th of November at Popsenteret. Most of the partners were present and gave a pitch of their company. More than 40 master, PhD and postdocs attended this successful event.

After the presentations, there was tapas and good drinks and all used the time to mingle and made contacts.


BigInsight Day 2018

The yearly BigInsight Workshop was held on Monday 29th October at the headquarter of DNB. Representatives from the different partners, in addition to project members, were present. It was a successful event with a wide selection of presentations of our projects, ideas and results.

This year the Workshop started with breakfast and a morning dance. DJ Tveten was playing space disco, house and techno.


R package BayesMallows released on CRAN!

The R package "BayesMallows: Bayesian Preference Learning with the Mallows Rank Model" has been finally released on CRAN website: https://cran.r-project.org/web/packages/BayesMallows/index.html

The package implements a quite general Bayesian inferential framework for preference data using the Mallows rank model, as described in Vitelli, Sørensen, Crispino, Frigessi and Arjas: "Probabilistic preference learning with the Mallows rank model", Journal of Machine Learning Research, 2018 http://jmlr.org/papers/v18/15-481.html.

Authors of the package are: Øystein Sørensen, Valeria Vitelli, Marta Crispino and Qingua Liu. The mantainer is Øystein Sørensen.


2018 black-box seminars: Personalised explanations of personalised predictions

Dear all Big Insighters,
Big Insight has a new innovation objective called "AI – Explanation & Law". We have planned three so-called black-box seminars on personalised explanations of personalised predictions. The seminars is for BigInsight partners only and will be held at Norwegian Computing Centre, Alfa/Omega.

September 12, 9:00-11:00:
"Personalised explanations – what is it and why should we care about it?"

October 10, 9:00-11:00:
"Personalised predictions: Ethics, anonymization, ownership of data and
making data public"

November 16, 9:00-11:00:
"Methods for personalised explanations"

See the enclosed, preliminary program for details. Registration is not necessary.

Big welcome!


PhD/Postdoc workshop at Klækken, October 2018

The statistics groups at the University of Oslo and the Norwegian University of Life Sciences invite all PhD students and postdocs within statistics in the Oslo region to a 2-day workshop.

Time and place: October 12th, 2018 - October 13th, 2018, Klækken Hotell.

The workshop will start before lunch on Friday October 12th  and it will end around lunch time Saturday October 13th  (with lunch included both days). 

Travel from Oslo and the stay at Klækken hotell (www.klaekken.no) will be covered by the individual institutions.

At the workshop the PhD students are expected to give a 10-20 minutes presentation of their ongoing research, the aim being to strengthen the professional communication between the group of PhD students. Postdocs who want to present their work are also welcome to do so.

Registration for the workshop has deadline September 1st. Registration is here https://skjema.uio.no/100421

Best wishes,
Magne Thoresen and Vera Djordjilovic

Norsk studie: Likhet i smerteterskel mellom venner

BigInsight PhD student Solveig Engebretsen’s paper on a network analysis of pain on NRK!



En ny norsk studie tyder på at det er sammenheng mellom hvor mye smerte folk tåler og hvilke venner de har.

SMERTE: Vennegjengen har noe å si for smertetoleransen. Her vrir Starts Adnan Hadzic seg i smerte etter en takling under kampen mot Lillestrøm i april. Foto: Heiko Junge / NTB scanpix

SMERTE: Vennegjengen har noe å si for smertetoleransen. Her vrir Starts Adnan Hadzic seg i smerte etter en takling under kampen mot Lillestrøm i april.
Foto: Heiko Junge / NTB scanpix