Comparative Genomics of Non-Model Invertebrates

Mariya Dimitrova

Mariya Dimitrova is working on ESR Project 15: Semantic publication, dissemination, visualization and re-use of biodiversity-related genomic and metagenomic data under the supervision of Prof Lyubomir Penev, Pensoft Publishers and Bulgarian Academy of Sciences (BAS). In her project, Mariya plans to further develop an open biodiversity knowledge management system, to enable the storage and retrieval of biodiversity-related information, integrated into a graph database from various biodiversity journals and other data stores. Implementing semantic technologies makes biodiversity information computer-readable and allows users to ask complex queries about the knowledge stored in the graph database. Mariya's aim is to enrich the functionality of this knowledge management system, so that more biodiversity-related information is extracted from publications. For example, she plans to add genomic and geographic information about the species described in biodiversity literature. With her work, Mariya also hopes to achieve functionality improvements, which would enhance information retrieval from the graph database, as well as the way data is modelled within it. The final goal is to develop an elaborate biodiversity search engine, which not only handles data storage and integration from different sources but also learns from data and infers new knowledge from it.

Before IGNITE, Mariya completed a Masters degree in Bioinformatics at the University of Glasgow. Her choice of degree was by large influenced by a brief but very positive experience with bioinformatics during her Bachelor studies in Medical Science at the University of Birmingham. In her own words: "After starting my Masters, I fell in love with programming and decided that I will make it a part of my career. In my final project, I used machine learning to create an algorithm which classifies a type of immune evasion gene in the genome of a trypanosome species. The current project would allow me to develop my interest in machine learning by implementing it in the field of biodiversity."

Mariya has always been fascinated with biology and the ways different organisms work. She enjoys reading about advancements in different fields of science and medicine, which allows her to further explore her scientific interests. In addition to learning about biology and other sciences from scientific literature, she likes to observe nature by hiking or walking outside. Among Mariya's interests are also travelling, taking pictures and cooking.

ESR Project 15: Semantic publication, dissemination, visualization and re-use of biodiversity-related genomic and metagenomic data

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