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ASU Electronic Theses and Dissertations


This collection includes most of the ASU Theses and Dissertations from 2011 to present. ASU Theses and Dissertations are available in downloadable PDF format; however, a small percentage of items are under embargo. Information about the dissertations/theses includes degree information, committee members, an abstract, supporting data or media.

In addition to the electronic theses found in the ASU Digital Repository, ASU Theses and Dissertations can be found in the ASU Library Catalog.

Dissertations and Theses granted by Arizona State University are archived and made available through a joint effort of the ASU Graduate College and the ASU Libraries. For more information or questions about this collection contact or visit the Digital Repository ETD Library Guide or contact the ASU Graduate College at gradformat@asu.edu.


Subject
Date Range
2010 2019


Study of canine cancer’s molecular underpinnings holds great potential for informing veterinary and human oncology. Sporadic canine cancers are highly abundant (~4 million diagnoses/year in the United States) and the dog’s unique genomic architecture due to selective inbreeding, alongside the high similarity between dog and human genomes both confer power for improving understanding of cancer genes. However, characterization of canine cancer genome landscapes has been limited. It is hindered by lack of canine-specific tools and resources. To enable robust and reproducible comparative genomic analysis of canine cancers, I have developed a workflow for somatic and germline variant calling in canine …

Contributors
Sivaprakasam, Karthigayini, Dinu, Valentin, Trent, Jeffrey, et al.
Created Date
2018

The past decade has seen a drastic increase in collaboration between Computer Science (CS) and Molecular Biology (MB). Current foci in CS such as deep learning require very large amounts of data, and MB research can often be rapidly advanced by analysis and models from CS. One of the places where CS could aid MB is during analysis of sequences to find binding sites, prediction of folding patterns of proteins. Maintenance and replication of stem-like cells is possible for long terms as well as differentiation of these cells into various tissue types. These behaviors are possible by controlling the expression …

Contributors
Balachandran, Parithi, Wang, Xiao, Brafman, David, et al.
Created Date
2017

In most diploid cells, autosomal genes are equally expressed from the paternal and maternal alleles resulting in biallelic expression. However, as an exception, there exists a small number of genes that show a pattern of monoallelic or biased-allele expression based on the allele’s parent-of-origin. This phenomenon is termed genomic imprinting and is an evolutionary paradox. The best explanation for imprinting is David Haig's kinship theory, which hypothesizes that monoallelic gene expression is largely the result of evolutionary conflict between males and females over maternal involvement in their offspring. One previous RNAseq study has investigated the presence of parent-of-origin effects, or …

Contributors
Underwood, Avery, Wilson, Melissa, Buetow, Kenneth, et al.
Created Date
2019

Parkinson's disease, the most prevalent movement disorder of the central nervous system, is a chronic condition that affects more than 1000,000 U.S. residents and about 3% of the population over the age of 65. The characteristic symptoms include tremors, bradykinesia, rigidity and impaired postural stability. Current therapy based on augmentation or replacement of dopamine is designed to improve patients' motor performance but often leads to levodopa-induced complications, such as dyskinesia and motor fluctuation. With the disease progress, clinicians must closely monitor patients' progress in order to identify any complications or decline in motor function as soon as possible in PD …

Contributors
Pan, Di, Petitti, Diana, Greenes, Robert, et al.
Created Date
2013

Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the leading cause of mortality yet largely preventable, but the key to prevention is to identify at-risk individuals before adverse events. For predicting individual CVD risk, carotid intima-media thickness (CIMT), a noninvasive ultrasound method, has proven to be valuable, offering several advantages over CT coronary artery calcium score. However, each CIMT examination includes several ultrasound videos, and interpreting each of these CIMT videos involves three operations: (1) select three enddiastolic ultrasound frames (EUF) in the video, (2) localize a region of interest (ROI) in each selected frame, and (3) trace the lumen-intima interface and the media-adventitia …

Contributors
Shin, Jae Yul, Liang, Jianming, Maciejewski, Ross, et al.
Created Date
2016

Immunosignaturing is a technology that allows the humoral immune response to be observed through the binding of antibodies to random sequence peptides. The immunosignaturing microarray is based on complex mixtures of antibodies binding to arrays of random sequence peptides in a multiplexed fashion. There are computational and statistical challenges to the analysis of immunosignaturing data. The overall aim of my dissertation is to develop novel computational and statistical methods for immunosignaturing data to access its potential for diagnostics and drug discovery. Firstly, I discovered that a classification algorithm Naive Bayes which leverages the biological independence of the probes on our …

Contributors
Kukreja, Muskan, Johnston, Stephen Albert, Stafford, Phillip, et al.
Created Date
2012

Peptide microarrays are to proteomics as sequencing is to genomics. As microarrays become more content-rich, higher resolution proteomic studies will parallel deep sequencing of nucleic acids. Antigen-antibody interactions can be studied at a much higher resolution using microarrays than was possible only a decade ago. My dissertation focuses on testing the feasibility of using either the Immunosignature platform, based on non-natural peptide sequences, or a pathogen peptide microarray, which uses bioinformatically-selected peptides from pathogens for creating sensitive diagnostics. Both diagnostic applications use relatively little serum from infected individuals, but each approaches diagnosis of disease differently. The first project compares pathogen …

Contributors
Navalkar, Krupa Arun, Johnston, Stephen A, Stafford, Phillip, et al.
Created Date
2014

Genes have widely different pertinences to the etiology and pathology of diseases. Thus, they can be ranked according to their disease-significance on a genomic scale, which is the subject of gene prioritization. Given a set of genes known to be related to a disease, it is reasonable to use them as a basis to determine the significance of other candidate genes, which will then be ranked based on the association they exhibit with respect to the given set of known genes. Experimental and computational data of various kinds have different reliability and relevance to a disease under study. This work …

Contributors
Lee, Jang, Gonzalez, Graciela, Ye, Jieping, et al.
Created Date
2011

Biochemical reactions underlie all living processes. Their complex web of interactions is difficult to fully capture and quantify with simple mathematical objects. Applying network science to biology has advanced our understanding of the metabolisms of individual organisms and the organization of ecosystems, but has scarcely been applied to life at a planetary scale. To characterize planetary-scale biochemistry, I constructed biochemical networks using global databases of annotated genomes and metagenomes, and biochemical reactions. I uncover scaling laws governing biochemical diversity and network structure shared across levels of organization from individuals to ecosystems, to the biosphere as a whole. Comparing real biochemical …

Contributors
Smith, Harrison Brodsky, Walker, Sara I, Anbar, Ariel D, et al.
Created Date
2018

Peptide microarrays have been used in molecular biology to profile immune responses and develop diagnostic tools. When the microarrays are printed with random peptide sequences, they can be used to identify antigen antibody binding patterns or immunosignatures. In this thesis, an advanced signal processing method is proposed to estimate epitope antigen subsequences as well as identify mimotope antigen subsequences that mimic the structure of epitopes from random-sequence peptide microarrays. The method first maps peptide sequences to linear expansions of highly-localized one-dimensional (1-D) time-varying signals and uses a time-frequency processing technique to detect recurring patterns in subsequences. This technique is matched …

Contributors
O'Donnell, Brian Nickerson, Papandreou-Suppappola, Antonia, Bliss, Daniel, et al.
Created Date
2014

Immunosignaturing is a new immunodiagnostic technology that uses random-sequence peptide microarrays to profile the humoral immune response. Though the peptides have little sequence homology to any known protein, binding of serum antibodies may be detected, and the pattern correlated to disease states. The aim of my dissertation is to analyze the factors affecting the binding patterns using monoclonal antibodies and determine how much information may be extracted from the sequences. Specifically, I examined the effects of antibody concentration, competition, peptide density, and antibody valence. Peptide binding could be detected at the low concentrations relevant to immunosignaturing, and a monoclonal's signature …

Contributors
Halperin, Rebecca Faith, Johnston, Stephen A, Bordner, Andrew, et al.
Created Date
2011

Circular RNAs (circRNAs) are a class of endogenous, non-coding RNAs that are formed when exons back-splice to each other and represent a new area of transcriptomics research. Numerous RNA sequencing (RNAseq) studies since 2012 have revealed that circRNAs are pervasively expressed in eukaryotes, especially in the mammalian brain. While their functional role and impact remains to be clarified, circRNAs have been found to regulate micro-RNAs (miRNAs) as well as parental gene transcription and may thus have key roles in transcriptional regulation. Although circRNAs have continued to gain attention, our understanding of their expression in a cell-, tissue- , and brain …

Contributors
Sekar, Shobana, Liang, Winnie S, Dinu, Valentin, et al.
Created Date
2018

In blindness research, the corpus callosum (CC) is the most frequently studied sub-cortical structure, due to its important involvement in visual processing. While most callosal analyses from brain structural magnetic resonance images (MRI) are limited to the 2D mid-sagittal slice, we propose a novel framework to capture a complete set of 3D morphological differences in the corpus callosum between two groups of subjects. The CCs are segmented from whole brain T1-weighted MRI and modeled as 3D tetrahedral meshes. The callosal surface is divided into superior and inferior patches on which we compute a volumetric harmonic field by solving the Laplace's …

Contributors
Xu, Liang, Wang, Yalin, Maciejewski, Ross, et al.
Created Date
2013

In species with highly heteromorphic sex chromosomes, the degradation of one of the sex chromosomes can result in unequal gene expression between the sexes (e.g., between XX females and XY males) and between the sex chromosomes and the autosomes. Dosage compensation is a process whereby genes on the sex chromosomes achieve equal gene expression which prevents deleterious side effects from having too much or too little expression of genes on sex chromsomes. The green anole is part of a group of species that recently underwent an adaptive radiation. The green anole has XX/XY sex determination, but the content of the …

Contributors
Rupp, Shawn Michael, Wilson Sayres, Melissa A, Kusumi, Kenro, et al.
Created Date
2016

The living world we inhabit and observe is extraordinarily complex. From the perspective of a person analyzing data about the living world, complexity is most commonly encountered in two forms: 1) in the sheer size of the datasets that must be analyzed and the physical number of mathematical computations necessary to obtain an answer and 2) in the underlying structure of the data, which does not conform to classical normal theory statistical assumptions and includes clustering and unobserved latent constructs. Until recently, the methods and tools necessary to effectively address the complexity of biomedical data were not ordinarily available. The …

Contributors
Brown, Justin Reed, Dinu, Valentin, Johnson, William, et al.
Created Date
2012

As we migrate into an era of personalized medicine, understanding how bio-molecules interact with one another to form cellular systems is one of the key focus areas of systems biology. Several challenges such as the dynamic nature of cellular systems, uncertainty due to environmental influences, and the heterogeneity between individual patients render this a difficult task. In the last decade, several algorithms have been proposed to elucidate cellular systems from data, resulting in numerous data-driven hypotheses. However, due to the large number of variables involved in the process, many of which are unknown or not measurable, such computational approaches often …

Contributors
Ramesh, Archana, Kim, Seungchan, Langley, Patrick W, et al.
Created Date
2012

Peptides offer great promise as targeted affinity ligands, but the space of possible peptide sequences is vast, making experimental identification of lead candidates expensive, difficult, and uncertain. Computational modeling can narrow the search by estimating the affinity and specificity of a given peptide in relation to a predetermined protein target. The predictive performance of computational models of interactions of intermediate-length peptides with proteins can be improved by taking into account the stochastic nature of the encounter and binding dynamics. A theoretical case is made for the hypothesis that, because of the flexibility of the peptide and the structural complexity of …

Contributors
Emery, Jack Scott, Pizziconi, Vincent B, Woodbury, Neal W, et al.
Created Date
2010

Hospital Emergency Departments (EDs) are frequently crowded. The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) collects performance measurements from EDs such as that of the door to clinician time. The door to clinician time is the time at which a patient is first seen by a clinician. Current methods for documenting the door to clinician time are in written form and may contain inaccuracies. The goal of this thesis is to provide a method for automatic and accurate retrieval and documentation of the door to clinician time. To automatically collect door to clinician times, single board computers were installed in …

Contributors
Frisby, Joshua, Nelson, Brian C, Patel, Vimla L, et al.
Created Date
2015

The healthcare system in this country is currently unacceptable. New technologies may contribute to reducing cost and improving outcomes. Early diagnosis and treatment represents the least risky option for addressing this issue. Such a technology needs to be inexpensive, highly sensitive, highly specific, and amenable to adoption in a clinic. This thesis explores an immunodiagnostic technology based on highly scalable, non-natural sequence peptide microarrays designed to profile the humoral immune response and address the healthcare problem. The primary aim of this thesis is to explore the ability of these arrays to map continuous (linear) epitopes. I discovered that using a …

Contributors
Richer, Joshua A., Johnston, Stephen A, Woodbury, Neal, et al.
Created Date
2014

Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) are highly prevalent illnesses that can result in profound impairment. While many patients with these disorders present in primary care, research suggests that physicians under-detect and suboptimally manage MDD and PTSD in their patients. The development of more effective training interventions to aid primary care providers in diagnosing mental health disorders is of the utmost importance. This research focuses on evaluating computer-based training tools (Avatars) for training family physicians to better diagnose MDD and PTSD. Three interventions are compared: a "choice" avatar simulation training program, a "fixed" avatar simulation training program, …

Contributors
Satter, Rachel M., Kinnier, Richard, Mackenzie, James, et al.
Created Date
2012