Biomedical and Obesity Research Core

Jingjie Hao

Jingjie Hao - Director of the Biomedical and Obesity Research Core

Research Assistant Professor

In my role as Director, I oversee the day-to-day operations of BORC and act as the primary contact for biostatistics coordinators associated with the core. I also serve as the main point of contact for core users, offering guidance on experimental design. Throughout my research career, I have focused on investigating plant root-associated microbiomes and exploring their molecular interactions with host plants. My work has involved a wide range of techniques, including transcriptome analysis, DNA methylome studies, root exudate metabolite profiling, and microbe metagenome assembly. I have managed and led a comprehensive soil microbiome project in maize, from initial planning to final data analysis. Additionally, I have expertise in generating high-quality 16S rRNA sequencing libraries and MiSeq data for microbial community analysis. I have conducted research on strigolactones biosynthesis and plant-microbe interactions in sorghum using the CRISPR/Cas9 system to induce targeted and heritable mutations of genes. Moreover, I have conducted in-depth investigation on the intricate mechanisms by which microbes influence root functions, focusing on the maize root transcriptome. Over the course of my career, I have honed my skills in molecular biology techniques, data
analysis, and experimental design. Moreover, I have gained valuable experience in supervising and advising staff and students, fostering their professional growth and ensuring the smooth operation of research projects.

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Stephen Kachman

Stephen Kachman - Biostatistics Coordinator


My research along with my collaborative work has centered on the development and application of statistical methods in the area of statistical genomics. With researchers across a wide variety of biological disciplines, I have worked on projects ranging from the genetic evaluation of production traits in livestock species to mechanisms of genetic control in microbes. In these projects, I have been able to successfully apply and extend varied statistical methodology ranging from QTL and microarray analysis to the analysis of generalized linear mixed models. All these projects have involved my active involvement as part of a collaborative team with biologists both at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and at other institutions. My collaborations have ideally positioned me to serve as a biostatistics coordinator for the Nebraska Center for the Prevention of Obesity Diseases through Dietary Molecules. In this role, I'm assisting Center members with experimental design and the analysis of research data. My expertise is particularly valuable during my meetings with the Center’s project leaders to discuss the preparation of their grant applications, assisting project leaders with regard to the statistical analysis of their data sets in preparation for publication, and ensuring their analytical procedures are clearly presented.

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Kathryn Hanford

Kathryn J. Hanford - Biostatistics Coordinator

Professor of Practice 

I assist Center members with experimental design and the analysis of research data. Additionally, I teach a variety of short courses and workshops to Center members on statistical software and experimental design.
My work and research experience cover a variety of areas in animal science, statistics, and biology. My strengths are in taking theoretical concepts in statistics and applying them to real world data. I collaborate extensively with researchers in the area of animal nutrition, agronomy, and entomology. I also coordinate the statistical consulting/collaboration effort in the Department of Statistics at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln (UNL). This includes training statistics graduate students on how to be good statistical collaborators and providing statistical support to faculty and graduate students at UNL. During my almost 10 years as a biostatistician in the pharmaceutical industry, I worked with a variety of clients in the design, execution, management, and reporting of their drug research. Statistical applications that I work with are experimental design, meta-analyses, and the application of generalized linear mixed model methodology.

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Hongfeng Yu

Hongfeng Yu - Computational Coordinator

Director of Holland Computing Center 
Associate Professor

I am interested in studying novel solutions to the problem of analyzing, visualizing, and communicating data at high interactivity and fidelity. This research effort has led to a number of new scalable algorithms and systems by exploiting high-performance parallel supercomputers and commodity programmable graphics hardware. These technologies have helped scientists from several universities and national laboratories obtain accurate and efficient visualizations for tera- and peta-scale applications, such as medical image processing, turbulent combustion, earthquake simulations, supernova evolution, climate simulations, biological analyses, environmental study, and so on. As the director of the Holland Computing Center at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, my expertise is essential for addressing key data computing requirements for the Nebraska Center for the Prevention of Obesity Diseases through Dietary Molecules. 

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