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Joint paper on collective behaviors wins 2017 Cozzarelli Prize

Author: Nina Welding

Danny Z. Chen

The paper titled “Three-dimensional Visualization and a Deep Learning Model Reveal Complex Fungal Parasite Networks in Behaviorally Manipulated Ants,” co-authored by David Hughes, an entomologist at Pennsylvania State University (PSU), and Danny Z. Chen, professor of computer science and engineering at the University of Notre Dame (ND), has been selected as one of six papers published in 2017 to receive the National Academy of Sciences’ Cozzarelli Prize. Each of the winning papers will be recognized during the PNAS Editorial Board Meeting on Sunday, April 29, 2018 in Washington, D.C.

Established in 2005 but renamed in 2007 to honor late PNAS editor-in-chief Nicholas R. Cozzarelli, the award recognizes papers that reflect outstanding scientific excellence and originality. The joint PSU-ND paper, honored for its work in biomedical science, details the collaborative project that studied the collective social behaviors of fugal cells inside host ants [zombie ants]. It was originally published in the Early Edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, Nov. 7, 2017. Other contributors included Maridel A. Fredericksen, Yizhe Zhang, Missy L. Hazen, Raquel G. Loreto and Colleen A. Mangold. Zhang is currently a graduate student in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at Notre Dame working with Chen.

Chen, whose research interests encompass the areas of computational biomedicine, biomedical imaging, computational geometry and applications, algorithm design and analysis, and parallel computing, is recognized for his contributions to computational techniques for geometric optimization and medical applications. He has developed a range of efficient algorithms for solving fundamental geometric, combinatorial, and optimization problems unique to biomedical imaging and radiation therapies — many of which are being used to improve patient diagnoses and treatment outcomes today.

A Fellow of the Institute for Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Chen is also a Distinguished Scientist of the Association for Computing Machinery.  He was selected as a Laureate in the 2011 Computerworld Honors Program for his work in arc-modulated radiation therapy. He also received the National Science Foundation CAREER Award in 1996.

Chen holds five U.S. patents for technology development in computer science and engineering and biomedical applications and has published more than 330 journal and conference papers.

Originally published by Nina Welding at on March 01, 2018.