I am interested in exploring anything mysterious and unexplained in this world. Among all branches of science, however, Cosmology, Biology, and Particle Physics have greatly attracted my attention. The reason behind my interests is given in an absolutely beautiful and concise quotation from Albert Einstein who once said:

I want to know God's thoughts...the rest are mere details.

and I think by `God's thoughts' he meant answers to the three greatest mysteries of the Universe, three questions that I have been very frequently pondering since I was a young teenager, which led me devote my life to science,

Why does the Universe bother to exist?

What is the mass & matter made of?

What is the origin of life?

Although Richard Feynman once said that answering the above questions might be very challenging or even impossible, I am optimistic that humanity will circumvent all the darkness surrounding human knowledge.




cancer

Tumor Growth Modeling

The ultimate goal in the field of computational oncology is to develop mathematical models that are capable of describing and predicting relevant biological phenomena simultaneously at all physical scales, from sub-cellular to tissue level. Achieving this holy grail, however, is extremely challenging at the moment given the computational expense and complexity of biological phenomena, perhaps comparable to the complexity of bringing fusion power down to earth for everyday energy needs of the society.

Starting May 2015, I have joined the Tumor Modeling Group at the Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences (ICES) led by Dr. J. Tinsley Oden at ICES with the goal of developing Multiscale Models of Vascular Tumor Growth. My current research focus is on developing a biophysically realistic model of single cell growth, motility, and later on, the interactions of cells with their environment and other cells.


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biophysics

Molecular Biology and Evolution

I have been working for several years on modelling the structure and the Molecular Dynamics of biological macromolecule systems, in particular, proteins. One of the primary goals in my studies was to identify the structural determinants of the squence evolution of viral and eukaryotic proteins. More information on this can be found in my publications.

The following animation is an example 1.5 [ns] Molecular Dynamics Simulation of the amino acid chains AB of Influenza Hemagglutinin protein at temperature 300 [K]. The simulations were used to measure the effects of amino acid local flexibility on the stability and evolution of proteins. The color coding represent the start of the protein chain A from N-terminus (blue) to the end of the protein chain B, the C-terminus (red).

The simulations were powered by the Stampede's NVIDIA Kepler K20 Graphical Processing Units at Texas Advanced Computing Center (TACC).



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astrophysics

High Energy Physics and Astronomy

For the majority of my research lifetime, I have worked in the field of High Energy Physics and Astronomy, mostly studying the underlying physics of Gamma Ray Bursts (GRBs), as well as the possible selection effects and instrumental biases that might affect the detection of GRBs by Gamma-ray detectors such as BATSE on board the Compton Gamma Ray Observatory (CGRO), the Burst Alert Telescope (BAT) onboard Swift satellite, and the Fermi Gamma-ray space telescope. These instrumental biases can affect or even create some of the reported empirical correlations among the spectral parameters of GRBs.

Although I am not anymore actively studying GRBs as my primary area of research career, I still do scientific research on Gamma-Ray Bursts in my leisure. More information on these ongoing researches can be found in the research news below and my publications.


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